Brown U. students settle rape charges

Cougar News Staff

Two Brown University students have dropped rape charges and a libel suit two years after the fact.

Adam Lack, a senior at the Providence, R.I., school, was found guilty of sexual misconduct in 1996 when then-sophomore Sara Klein claimed he raped her.

Lack was suspended for a semester but received a charge of "flagrant disrespect" and probation upon appeal.

He argued that he had sex with Klein's consent, not because she was drunk, as she claimed. Lack said she talked with him after the encounter and even gave him her telephone number.

Klein accused Lack of rape six weeks after the incident and claimed she may not have known she was drunk at the time.

Since her charge of rape was in writing, Lack sued Klein for libel and filed suit against Brown for breach of contract, violation of Title IX, which prevents gender bias and negligence, since Lack claimed he was punished without proper evidence.

The case attracted national attention when the ABC national news program 20/20 aired the story in March 1997.

That segment generated controversy at Brown among students who felt John Stossel, the ABC reporter sent to file the report, did so in a nonprofessional manner.

The fact that both parties have dropped their charges indicates they are "moving past the troubles of the last two years," according to Mark Nikel, a university spokesman.

"They're both students in good standing who we hope will continue to work toward completing their degrees."

After Lack and Klein agreed to the personal truce, Lack dropped his suit against the university.

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