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U-M Students Protest School’s Handling Of Rape Allegations Against Former Football Player

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Students gather in protest of the handling of rape allegations against a former UM football player. (WWJ/Sandra McNeill)

Students gather in protest of the handling of rape allegations against a former UM football player. (WWJ/Sandra McNeill)

ANN ARBOR (WWJ) – A few dozen students staged a protest at the University of Michigan over the school’s handling of a rape allegation against a former football player.

UM Protest Gibbons 3(SMcNeill)Former kicker Brendon Gibbons was expelled for sexual misconduct last September; four years after an 18-year-old student accused Gibbons of raping her at a frat party.

Student Laura Herbert says the school handled the case all wrong:

“I would like to know why Brady Hoke told the press that Brendon Gibbons was attending to a family matter in Florida after he knew that Gibbons had been expelled,” said Herbert. “We believe that there is a difference between declining to comment, which I think policy does uphold, and actively lying and misleading. We think it made a lot of students feel unsafe on the campus.

When Gibbons was suspended for a game last season Coach Hoke told the media that he was injured.

“I believe that my friends, my classmates and students have the right to feel safe on campus. I would really like to see the administration be more forthcoming and more supportive of student safety,” Herbert said. “I think that if Brady Hoke was not the football coach, he wouldn’t be allowed to lie to the press.”

Senior Christopher Moore told WWJ that he’s disturbed by the case.

“Honestly, it just shows you that the university never cared,” he said.

Another student, sophomore Cassandra VanDan, said that the way in which the case was handled makes her feel unsafe.

“I’m really angry, I’m really angry at the campus climate right now, I’m really angry that this rape culture is just being perpetuated,” she said.

No charges were ever filed in the case.

The U.S. Department of Education is investigating how the school handled the case.

READ MORE ON THE GIBBONS STORY HERE.

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