Ex-NMSU players allege sexual attack in suit
Two former New Mexico State guys’s basketball players submitted a suit Wednesday, declaring they were sexually assaulted by teammates which the coaching staff and other administrators did nothing when they reported the assaults.The claim was submitted by Deuce Benjamin and another player who stated three teammates forced them to pull their trousers down below their ankles, then attacked them. The Associated Press usually does not name individuals who say they were sexually assaulted, however Benjamin had actually previously referenced the alleged attacks while revealing his departure from the group on social media.Chancellor Dan Arvizu canceled the season in February after
Benjamin took his allegations to school police. Arvizu framed the claims as stemming from a hazing episode. The civil claim, filed in district court in Las Cruces, New Mexico, disagreed with that description, saying,”when the behavior goes too far, and crosses the line into nonconsensual touching, it is not simple hazing; it is battery and sexual attack.”The suit noted as offenders the NMSU board of regents, 2 former members of the training staff and three previous players. It seeks” total up to fairly compensate”the complainants for their damages, along with compensatory damages. One count in the lawsuit declares sexual attack, battery and false imprisonment.Editor’s Picks 2 Associated School spokesperson Justin Bannister said New Mexico State is working with a law practice to investigate the claims.” While NMSU does not talk about pending lawsuits, we desire
to guarantee everybody that this issue is being taken seriously,”Bannister said.The suit states that when the player whose name the AP is not using
first approached an assistant coach about the assaults, the coach responded by laughing and saying “What do you want me to do about it?” It says the player talked about the attacks three times with another coach, who”said that he was checking out it and would issue some suspensions,”but no action was taken.The lawsuit states one of a number of attacks versus Benjamin was available in front of a group of women in a hotel room where the players were remaining prior to a roadway game. It says one of the players “exposed Deuce’s backside and forcefully got(him), inflicting terrific pain and humiliation. All this happened in front of the females, which only contributed to Deuce’s deterioration.”Benjamin ultimately told his daddy, a previous New Mexico State star and existing high school coach in Las Cruces, about the attacks. His father, William Benjamin, attempted to reach coaches and the school’s athletic director, Mario Moccia, but neither returned his calls, the lawsuit stated. That led to the player taking his claims to campus police, who opened an investigation.The claim said the school’s new coach, Jason Hooten, informed Benjamin, who was New Mexico’s Gatorade high school player of the year before signing with the Aggies, that he ought to try to find a new location to play.In an area entitled “The Downward Spiral of the NMSU Basketball Program, “the suit information events that
caused the deadly shooting on Nov. 19, 2022, of a student at the University of New Mexico by NMSU player Mike Peake. Peake, who has actually not been charged in the shooting, is shown
on video acting in self-defense after the student, Brandon Travis, pulled a gun on him. The morning after the shooting, most of the NMSU players were loaded onto a group bus, which cops needed to chase down so they could question the coaching staff and witnesses.Benjamin’s departure leaves only one player on the roster from the 2022-23 team.It comes less than two weeks after Arvizu said he would be leaving his position instantly, instead of waiting for his formerly scheduled June 30 departure date.