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Former Student Files Federal Lawsuit Against Vincennes University
Updated May 12, 2016 6:18 AM | Filed under: Crime
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(TERRE HAUTE) - A former female Vincennes University student claims she was beaten, raped and confined over an 11 day period. Her attorneys hold VU responsible and seek damages on her behalf.

It happened in the fall semester of 2013.

In the complaint, the student claims former VU student Valdemar Castellano used knives, the threat of violence and intimidation to keep her under his control during the 11 days. She says during that time he raped her six times, including in the bedroom of the childhood home in Scott County.

The lawsuit also names Castellano as a defendant.

Castellano was no stranger to VU Police or university administration. The complaint claims at least six students filed harassment complaints with the university against Castellano. Yet, no discipline or charges resulted from the complaints, which also included claims of unwanted sexual advances made by Castellano.

In the complaint, attorneys for "Jane Doe" claims VU's "deliberate indifference" to Castellano's past allowed him to be on campus in the fall of '13, setting up the incidents alleged in the complaint.

Castellano was ultimately dismissed by VU.

According to the complaint, he's living in Allen County, Ohio. Lima is the county seat of Allen County. The female student withdrew from VU during the spring '14 semester. She claims the university offered her no support following the alleged rapes.

Castellano was never charged despite the victim meeting with the Dean of Students, representatives from Hope's Voice in Vincennes, VU Police and the Knox County Prosecutor.

We asked Vincennes University for comment on this matter. Here's a written statement from attorney Jill Doggett on the university's behalf:

"We appreciate your interest in Vincennes University; however, it is the University's policy not to comment on pending litigation. The University is also bound by the requirements and regulations of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), which protects the privacy of student education records.

Vincennes University is committed to maintaining an environment free from exploitation and intimidation based on sex. Information about Vincennes University's sexual assault and harassment policies, services for victims, and the University's campus crime statistics, can be found on the University's website."



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