Baylor president Ken Starr publicly addressed the media for the first time Thursday about a series of rape scandals involving football players, according to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.
Speaking at a Christian prayer breakfast in Fort Worth, Starr told columnist Mac Engel that the school had refrained from addressing the cases involving defensive end Sam Ukwuachu and former player Tevin Elliot on the advice of prominent law firm Pepper Hamilton, which the school has retained.
Pepper Hamilton is currently compiling a report on how Baylor handled the rape allegations.
“We retained [the Philadelphia law firm of Pepper Hamilton to investigate]. In our view, we cannot and should not [address it],” Starr said. “That is the guidance we have gotten from outside counsel. You simply cannot.”
Starr also said that he was not sure when the school would release the full report.
“You have to be very careful about the timeline and what you say publicly about specific cases,” he said. ”But we’ll see. I should also say that Pepper Hamilton, the buck stops here, that I recommended that Pepper Hamilton be retained by the board [of regents], the ultimate fiduciaries. So Pepper Hamilton is reporting to the board to preserve its independence because presidents get fired. The independent report will go to a special committee of the board of regents.”
The victim in the Ukwuachu case eventually reached a settlement with Baylor, while the player was sentenced to 10 years of probation and a 180-day jail term. Elliot was sentenced to a maximum of 20 years in prison on two counts of sexual assault.