More than two weeks after filing a Title IX discrimination lawsuit against the University, the Medill junior involved in the litigation filed a civil suit against Professor Peter Ludlow, alleging that he sexually assaulted her.
In a complaint filed Wednesday in Cook County Circuit Court, the plaintiff seeks actual and emotional distress damages from Professor Ludlow, who was her freshman seminar professor. The complaint alleges that in February 2012, the philosophy professor took her to an art exhibit in Chicago, bought her alcoholic drinks, took her to his apartment and assaulted her.
Unlike the federal lawsuit filed Feb. 10, this civil lawsuit seeks damages directly from Professor Ludlow under the Gender Violence Act of Illinois.
In the wake of the federal lawsuit, Professor Ludlow denied the allegations of sexual assault in a public statement from his attorney, Kristin Case.
"Mr. Ludlow did not assault [the plaintiff] nor did he engage in any inappropriate conduct," it read. "We have corroborating evidence that [the plaintiff] propositioned Mr. Ludlow. He refused her advances."
The plaintiff told NBN Thursday that the incident caused her to miss classes and take medical leave from the university.
"For the past two years, my life was almost ruined. It has been so hard for me the past two years. I could not get my stuff together," she said. "I felt like my life was starting to fall – it was falling apart already."
According to the University’s response to the federal lawsuit filed Friday, an internal investigation found that Professor Ludlow violated the University's sexual harassment policy and was disciplined correspondingly, but was not removed from the faculty. Ludlow will reportedly be taking a faculty position at Rutgers University in the fall.