Nearly a year after it was filed, the last part of a lawsuit brought by former Flames football player Cameron Jackson against Liberty University was resolved Tuesday in Lynchburg District Court.
“… Plaintiff and Defendants hereby stipulate that they have resolved this matter…” reads part of the joint stipulation to dismiss with prejudice filed in Lynchburg District Court on Tuesday.
Attorneys representing parties in the lawsuits did not comment on how the matter was resolved or if there was a financial settlement.
Jackson initially filed a wide-ranging lawsuit against LU in April that later was narrowed to charges of denying his Title IX rights as part of an investigation into an alleged off-campus sexual assault in 2015 and of defaming him in a news release with details of the school’s findings. In addition to Liberty, Jackson filed suit against his accuser and LU spokesperson Len Stevens for defamation. Jackson’s former teammates Kyle Carrington and Avery James filed similar lawsuits.
As of publication, the lawsuits brought by Carrington and James still were open, according to court documents. All three cases, filed in 2017, were scheduled to go to jury trials this fall.
The plaintiffs claim Liberty bungled the investigation into the alleged sexual assault and defamed them via a news release that did not include their claims of innocence or that they had appealed the finding. No charges were filed against any of the three men following an investigation by the Lynchburg Police Department in fall 2016, shortly after the alleged victim came forward with details of the incident.
Each lawsuit initially sought more than $100 million in total damages.
All three plaintiffs dropped their Title IX claims against Liberty in late February. According to court documents, all three Title IX charges were dismissed “with prejudice” in Lynchburg District Court, meaning those individual claims cannot be brought forward again.
Jackson’s remaining defamation charges against LU, Stevens and the accuser were dismissed with prejudice.
“Cam agrees that there are no issues left for the Court to resolve. He’s satisfied with the outcome of his case. There’s really nothing else I can say on the topic,” Joshua Farmer, the attorney representing Jackson, wrote in a brief email Tuesday.
“The parties … have now resolved the remaining matters to their mutual satisfaction. Liberty University has no further comment,” David Corry, LU general counsel, wrote via email Wednesday.
In their original lawsuits, each player claimed their reputations have been irreparably damaged and their futures were put on hold due to an academic notation placed on their transcripts by LU, which states they were found by the university to have violated its sexual assault and harassment policies.
The transcript notations — since removed — prevented the three former Flames from attending other universities. They claim the delay undercut their academic and athletic careers and future earnings.
Though unable to calculate the cost of a lost athletic scholarship or possible NFL earnings, a vocational expert did provide an estimate of finances lost from Jackson’s delayed career start in court filings.
Based on his progress toward a degree in information technology and the two-year delay caused by his administrative removal from LU, lost earnings were projected at $110,000 to $142,000.