Tags: national anthem | taking a knee

Cheerleader Punished for Taking a Knee Wins Huge Settlement

Five Kennesaw State University cheerleaders took a knee during the National Anthem on Sept. 30, 2017
Five Kennesaw State University cheerleaders took a knee during the National Anthem on Sept. 30, 2017. (Cory Hancock/Atlanta Journal-Constitution via AP)

By    |   Monday, 09 December 2019 10:12 AM

For two years, a former cheerleader from Kennesaw State University has been fighting for her rights after being penalized for taking a knee during the national anthem at a college football game. Her quest has ended with a $145,000 settlement.

The Kennesaw State University student, Tommia Dean, was handed $93,000 while a further $52,000 was allocated to her lawyers to cover legal fees and accrued expenses, the Marietta Daily Journal reported last week on the settlement that was made in October with the Georgia Department of Administrative Services.

The settlement paperwork says it is not an "admission, finding, conclusion, evidence or indication for any purposes whatsoever, that the K.S.U. defendants or Ehrhart acted contrary to the law," according to The New York Times.

According to legal documents, Dean and four other cheerleaders were prevented from appearing on the field for two home football games after they took a knee on Sept. 30, 2017.

Dean subsequently filed a lawsuit against then school president Samul S. Olens as well as Sheriff Neil Warren and Earl Ehrhart, a former republican state legislator.

Dean further alleged that Warren and Ehrhart, who were later dismissed from the lawsuit, had been guilty of putting pressure on Olens to punish her and her peers.

The dismissal has since been appealed, said Dean's lawyer Bruce P. Brown.

"The appeal is important because it calls into question when private parties can be liable under the civil rights laws of causing a public official or conspiring with a public official to violate a citizen's First Amendment rights," Brown said.

In a statement, Kennesaw State's assistant vice president Tammy DeMel said the school was not involved in the settlement, which it was made aware of over the weekend.

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For two years a former cheerleader from Kennesaw State University has been fighting for her rights after being penalized for taking a knee during the national anthem at a college football game. Her quest has ended with a $145,000 settlement.
national anthem, taking a knee
288
2019-12-09
Monday, 09 December 2019 10:12 AM
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