District Attorney Denies Newspapers’ Request for U of Oregon Records

The Register Guard and The Oregonian asked for records regarding allegations of sexual assault directed at three UO basketball players.

EUGENE, Ore. – The Lane County District Attorney’s Office has denied local newspapers’ requests that the University of Oregon disclose records related to sexual assault allegations against three UO basketball players.

The Register-Guard and The Oregonian requested E-mails, text messages or electronic or print records written or received by the university’s president, its athletic director and basketball coach regarding the alleged sexual assaults by UO basketball players Damyean Dotson, Dominic Artis and Brandon Austin.

UO officials denied the request, but stated that it had kicked the three players off the team and banned them from the university for at least four years after finding them responsible of sexual misconduct, The Register-Guard reports.

The decision led the two newspapers to file an appeal with the District Attorney’s office. The newspapers argued that the public is entitled to learn what campus officials knew about the alleged assaults and when they learned about the incidents.

However, the DA’s office says the records are exempt from disclosure under the federal Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) because they relate to named UO students.

The newspapers plan to file a lawsuit against the university.

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