Parties agree to venue, timeline in UT sexual assault lawsuit

NASHVILLE (WATE) – Following a pre-trial hearing in Nashville on Thursday, all parties have agreed that the Title IX lawsuit against the University of Tennessee can be tried in Nashville and the timeline for the case has been solidified.

The court previously ruled that the case was to stay in Nashville. UT had filed a motion to either dismiss the case due to improper venue, being Nashville, or move the case to Knoxville. The plaintiffs attorneys argued that UT, being a state institution, was within Nashville’s jurisdiction and many of the plaintiffs live in Middle Tennessee.

More coverage: University of Tennessee Sexual Assault

Filings also order the trial in the case to start on Tuesday, May 22, 2018. Parties are expected to exchange copies of exhibits by April 17, 2018. Witness lists, exhibit lists, stipulations and expert witness statements are to be filed by May 1, 2018, and a pretrial conference will be held in Judge Aleta Trauger’s chambers on May 4, 2018.

The case is expected to last three to four weeks.

The suit alleges that eight “Jane Does,” while students at UT in Knoxville, were victims of sexual assault, aggravated assault, false imprisonment and harassment by football and basketball players and “suffered retaliation by the perpetrators and other students for reporting these events and assisting with investigations.” The eight bring claims against UT under Title IX, saying UT has an alleged official policy of deliberate indifference to sexual assault, causing the alleged victims to endure additional consequences.

The university denies the accusations.

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