Lawsuit claims Syracuse University did not do enough to prevent Scanlan abuse

Orange Nation

SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) – Syracuse University is being sued by an unnamed victim in the wake of an incident involving former Men’s Lacrosse Player Chase Scanlan.  

In a lawsuit filed this week, the victim claims the University, including Athletic Director John Wildhack and former Men’s Lacrosse Head Coach John Desko, did not do enough to prevent Scanlan from abusing them.  

In part, the lawsuit claims: “The Scanlan Assault was the avoidable conclusion of a chain of sexual harassment and domestic violence that included animal abuse, stalking, reproductive coercion and property damage, all of which Plaintiff had directly reported to both a member of the SU Women’s Lacrosse Team Coaching Staff and a SU Title IX.” 

It goes on to say:  “SU deliberately dragged its feet on investigating Scanlan as the Men’s Lacrosse Team closed out its season while local law enforcement seemed completely unaware of the Scanlan Assault crimes until around a week later.” 

According to the victim’s statement in court documents from May 2021, they claimed to have been in an on-and-off relationship with Chase Scanlan, and at the time the two were not actively dating. The victim said alcohol was consumed by Scanlan on the night of the incident and said Scanlan was intoxicated. 

The victim said Scanlan broke her phone and injured her ribs by wrapping her up in his legs in the domestic incident. The victim told police they “thought they were going to die.” 

The victim alleged that Scanlan later bought her a new phone after he threw her old one in a toilet. The victim said that Scanlan was motivated by jealousy. 

Scanlan was arrested and charged back in May and in no longer enrolled at Syracuse University.  

In a statement to NewsChannel 9, Syracuse University said: 

The University takes very seriously every report of sexual harassment and assault that it receives. While we do not comment on pending litigation, we are confident in the University’s strong structure and robust processes for addressing all reports of sexual harassment and assault brought to our attention, all of which are compliant with and guided by federal and state law.

In every instance of reported sexual harassment or assault, the University’s Title IX coordinator promptly contacts the reporting individual to, among other things, offer supportive actions, gather information, and explain the University’s processes. Multiple offices on campus, as well as external partners, are pulled together to offer supportive actions such as no contact orders, counseling and case management, housing relocations, class schedule changes, and safety escorts. 

This process is confidential to ensure and protect the privacy of all involved parties.

You can read the lawsuit here: 

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