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Yale alumni contribute to star athlete's sex-expulsion case

(AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez, File)

Yale University alumni are helping pay the legal costs of a former basketball star who is fighting his expulsion for sexual misconduct.

Jack Montague told attorneys in a court deposition that $25,000 to $30,000 had been raised from alumni to help him pay costs associated with his lawsuit that asserts he was wrongly expelled in 2016 for sexually assaulting another Yale student. None of the alumni are identified nor does Montague say how many have contributed.

The suit alleges a Title IX officer brought a complaint against him in autumn 2015 despite being told the woman did not believe Montague heard her when she tried to end their October 2014 sexual encounter. No criminal charges were ever sought.

Montague is seeking unspecified monetary damages and to be allowed to finish his final semester at the Ivy League school.

Yale's attorneys have said the woman, identified only as Jane Roe, made it clear that she did not want to have intercourse and that the school and its officials acted appropriately.

The Bulldogs' former point guard and team captain testified during his deposition that in addition to alumni support, his former Yale teammates set up a crowdfunding page that has raised more than $5,000 to help pay his legal bills.

Montague argues in his lawsuit that his academic and employment prospect have been drastically limited by his expulsion. He testified during the deposition that he has been unable to apply to other schools because Yale won't release his transcripts until he pays a $3,000 tuition debt.

"That represents the last semester that I didn't finish," he testified. "So, as soon as I was expelled, they sent me a bill for $3,000."

Montague's testimony was given in March but recently became public as part of a motion by Yale lawyers, who are trying to compel his parents to divulge how much they are paying a public relations firm to represent Montague's side of the case to the media.

"The amount of money which (Montague) has paid to his public relations firm and which has been raised for his legal fees is certainly relevant, as those funds could have been used to pay the outstanding bill at Yale University and obtain his transcript, thereby enabling him to apply to other colleges and universities in a timely manner," wrote Yale attorney Patrick Noonan.

Through a spokeswoman, Montague declined to comment.

But in the deposition, he said he needs to be readmitted to Yale or receive money from the lawsuit to continue his education at another school, such as Vanderbilt University, which is near his home in Tennessee.

"If I were to apply and get accepted into Vanderbilt, then I would also be looking at another year of school, at least another year of school, which would be way more than $3,000 and probably somewhere around $60,000 or $70,000," he said in the deposition. "And that's something that my parents cannot afford."

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