Criminal charges dropped in WKU Sigma Nu case, yet civil lawsuit remains

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Sigma Nu’s WKU chapter house sits on the edge of campus.

Debra Murray, Editor-in-Chief

All charges dismissed against a former WKU student regarding his arrest for alleged rape of a woman in the Sigma Nu fraternity house that occurred on Feb. 27, 2021.

The charges that were dismissed against Ben Massingille on Dec. 12 were degree rape, first-degree sodomy, and first-degree unlawful imprisonment, according to case history obtained by the Herald.

While the criminal charges have been dropped, the civil suit brought by the alleged victim still remains.

“WKU allowed an environment rife with sex discrimination and hostility to flourish in its Greek life communities and failed to take reasonable actions to remedy it despite being on notice,” Leslie Pescia, attorney representing the alleged victim, said in the lawsuit filed last year in Warren Circuit Court.

The civil suit names Massingille, WKU, Sigma Nu Fraternity and its WKU chapter, WKU President Timothy Caboni, former Title IX coordinator Andrea Anderson, WKU Director of Student Activities Charley Pride and WKU Assistant Director of Greek Life Andrew Rash as defendants. No trial date has been set at this time. 

“The University does not have anything new to add to our prior comments in the case following the Commonwealth’s decision to dismiss criminal charges,” Jace Lux, WKU spokesperson, said in an email. 

Editor-in-Chief Debra Murray can be reached at [email protected] Follow her on Twitter @debramurrayy.