Michigan State clears former basketball players in sexual assault case

The Detroit News
Michigan State University student Bailey Kowalski gets support from her mother, Robin Kowalski, before an April press conference in East Lansing.

A Title IX investigation by Michigan State University did not find violations in the case of Bailey Kowalski, who earlier this year publicly accused the school of discouraging her to report an alleged rape four years ago by three players on the school’s basketball team, an MSU spokeswoman confirmed.

“There were no findings in the case,” Emily Gerkin Guerrant said late Friday.  “A preponderance of the evidence does not support that the respondents violated the university’s Relationship, Violence and Sexual Misconduct policy.”

The investigation was completed this week by the school’s Office of Institutional Equity.

ESPN says it obtained a copy of the investigation report this week. ESPN was first to report the findings of the investigation on Friday.

 Kowalski's attorney told The Detroit News late Friday that her client is "disgusted" by the report's conclusion and will likely appeal. 

"I don't think she's surprised by it but it's disappointing," said attorney Karen Truszkowski. 

She said Kowalski plans to file a police report with the Lansing Township Police Department soon. 

Truszkowski declined to comment further.

Guerrant said late Friday she could not provide the report but would review next week whether it could be released, with personal information redacted.

Guerrant said the claimant has a right to appeal the decision.

In April, Kowalski, an MSU senior, publicly accused the university of discouraging her from reporting the alleged assault. Kowalski filed a Title IX lawsuit against MSU, and that suit is pending.

“I chose to come to Michigan State University. I did not choose to be gang raped,” Kowalski said at the time. “I did not choose the consequences I and my family have been forced to bear. Those decisions were made for me when I was 18.”

In Kowalski’s Title IX lawsuit, she accuses three MSU basketball players of assaulting her in an off-campus apartment after they met at Harper’s Bar in East Lansing.