Special Reports

Rolling Stone Settles UVa Lawsuit About 2014 Campus Rape Story [Video]


Rolling Stone magazine has settled a lawsuit filed by a former administrator of the University of Virginia. This was about a story published by the magazine about a rape on campus.

It was previously reported that Rolling Stone magazine published an article claiming that several members of the Phi Kappa Psi fraternity at the school had raped a woman named Jackie. The act was said to have happened during a chapter house party as part of an initiation rite.

There were major discrepancies and led to Rolling Stone issuing multiple apologies for the story. The now-retracted article, which was published on Nov. 19, 2014, was written by Sabrina Erdely.

The retraction of the University of Virginia sexual assault story was recently debated in federal court. UVa dean Nicole Eramo sued Rolling Stone for libel. Eramo argued in court that the article was factually wrong and was based on assumptions that administrators like her are not helpful to rape victims. The dean asked for $7.5 million for damages.

According to the Associated Press, via USA Today College, attorneys representing the publication and the administrator announced this week that they have reached a confidential settlement over the case. It was described by Rolling Stone as an "amicable resolution."

This is not the end of the battle for the publication, though. It still faces a lawsuit of over $25 million filed by the UVa chapter of the fraternity where Jackie was allegedly raped. The trial is scheduled for October.

The settlement came after Rolling Stone challenged a jury's verdict back in November awarding Eramo with $3 million. Back in December, the magazine asked the judge to overturn the jury's decision, claiming that there is no evidence that reporter Sabrina Erdely acted with actual malice.

Media organizations urged the judge to overrule the finding that Rolling Stone "republished" the false claims when it attached an editor's note highlighting the problems with the story to its online platform. They argued that punishing the magazine for trying to alert the public to problems with the story could discourage publications from correcting errors.

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