Amount cheerleader who refused to cheer rapist required to pay reduced

Some good news for the Texas high school cheerleader who sued her school after she was thrown off the squad for refusing to cheer for a basketball player who had plead guilty to sexually assaulting her.

While she lost her shot at winning her case when the Supreme Court refused to hear her appeal, this decision references the amount of money ($39,000) a lower court had ordered she and her parents to pay to address the “frivolous” lawsuit. According to KFDM news:

The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans said the lower court erred in finding that one of the four claims of the former cheerleader – a violation of her First Amendment right to free speech – was frivolous. The court said the fees should be recalculated based on the remaining claims it says were rightly called frivolous.

The remaining claims were about her right to “liberty, property, equal protection and due process,” which this court affirmed had no merit. So basically, her family will only be forced to pay a portion of the original $39,000 to the school.


Related: Cheerleader who refused to cheer for rapist loses court case

Join the Conversation

  • Sue Nugent

    I would hope this cheerleader and family gets some kind of support in paying these fees.
    Although, I think its a miscarriage of justice. I for one would like to make a donation–if all women in this country who have been assaulted gave just a dollar-it would send a message.

    • Nefarious Newt

      There was a collection being taken up for her at one time. I need to find the link… But frankly, the amount should be zero.

      • Nefarious Newt
        • Jenny Gonzalez-Blitz

          Thanks! I’ll certainly be happy to help out.

  • Veronica

    He pleaded guilty…and they STILL called it a frivolous lawsuit?! WTF?

    I for one don’t think she should have to pay a dime for this crap.

    • davenj

      The issue wasn’t his behavior. Her lawsuit was against the school district, particularly ability right to limit free speech.

      This legal matter is based on the Kuhlmeier case, and it sides almost entirely with the school district. She chose to appeal this case far up the judiciary, losing each time, and forcing the school district to pay for its legal defense. It is pretty clear that she didn’t have a civil case in this instance, and the amount of times she appealed was frivolous in that regard. Thus, she is legally culpable for the school district’s legal fees.

      None of the civil case was between her and her attacker.

      • Callie

        Thank you. Reading coverage of this case often frustrates me because in headline, sound-bite form, it sounds so terribly unfair. I feel so sorry for what this poor girl suffered- but her lawsuit against the school was frivolous. I wish I had time to explain the actual legal issues going on in the background to everyone who is up in arms about this case.

  • Erin

    I’d donate, too. Maybe we could set up some kind of fund.

  • Trey

    Its outrageous that she’d have to pay anything. The justice system (and her school/community) definitely failed here.

  • Third Wave Housewife

    Great, now the outcome of this horrible story makes me want to cry/puke a little less. Really, this story makes my skin crawl every time I think about it.

  • Andrew

    RAKHEEM BOLTON should have to pay, I wonder he was ever sued in civil court. Maybe he’s gonna relapse into more crimes now that his name’s out there and people won’t feel comfortable hiring him.

    • davenj

      Rakheem Bolton wasn’t the defendant in the civil suit. Why would he have to pay anything here?

      As for “Maybe he’s gonna relapse into more crimes now that his name’s out there and people won’t feel comfortable hiring him.”?

      I cannot believe that Feministing would allow such a pro-recidivist comment. The inability to rehabilitate criminals is a serious social problem, not some perverse form of ongoing “justice”.

      The attitudes here show a profound misunderstanding of this case, criminal/civil law, and, apparently, the basics of social justice.