A Spelman College student filed a lawsuit Tuesday against Morehouse College that claims campus officials dismissed her Title IX complaint against a Morehouse student after she reported that he sexually assaulted her.
Spelman and Morehouse belong to the Atlanta University Center Consortium, a coalition of historically Black colleges and universities in Atlanta where students regularly interact at joint programs and events.
The Spelman student, Abebitu “Abbie” Fields, alleges the Morehouse student gave her alcohol with a sexual stimulant added to it, then raped her in his residence hall. She filed a complaint with Morehouse College’s police department and Title IX office last academic year, according to a press release from L. L. Dunn Law Firm, which is representing her.
“I am not the first Spelman student to be sexually assaulted by one of our ‘brothers’ at Morehouse,” Fields said in the release. “Morehouse has done virtually nothing to address the drugging or campus sexual assault, as the offender is walking around on campus with me every day, but apparently, it had the time to deny me my federal civil rights under Title IX.”
The lawsuit, filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia, alleges Morehouse has a “discriminatory policy and practice of disenfranchising female students from Spelman College from their Title IX rights to proceed against male students for campus sexual assaults occurring on Morehouse College’s campus.” It also claims the college “fails to educate its students on consent and sexual misconduct, frequently mishandles reports of sexual assault (which fosters a culture of sexual violence) and has unusually frequent turnover with Title IX coordinators.”