Katie Meyer’s family files wrongful death lawsuit against Stanford

Katie Meyer’s family files wrongful death lawsuit against Stanford

Katie Meyer’s family files wrongful death lawsuit against Stanford

The parents of Katie Meyer, a star soccer goalkeeper who died by suicide last spring, filed a wrongful-death lawsuit against Stanford on Wednesday.

At the time of her death, Meyer, 21, was facing disciplinary action for allegedly spilling coffee on a Stanford football player who was accused of sexually assaulting a female football player. Meyer’s father said his daughter was defending that teammate, who was a minor at the time.

The lawsuit says that on the night of her death, Stanford “negligently and recklessly” sent her the formal disciplinary notice that “contained threatening language regarding sanctions and potential ‘removal from the university.’

On the night of Feb. 28, Meyer had FaceTimed her parents and two sisters from her dorm room at Stanford, and she was in good spirits, according to her mother. They coordinated her spring break plans, which included a stop at home in Southern California before a few days in Mexico with friends.

However, her parents say that later that evening, Meyer received the six-page email from Stanford informing her of a disciplinary hearing.

The next day, Meyer was found dead in her dormitory, where she lived as a resident advisor. An autopsy performed on March 3 confirmed that the manner of death was by suicide.

“Stanford’s after-hours disciplinary action, and the reckless nature and manner of subjecting Katie, caused Katie to have an acute stress reaction that impulsively led to her suicide,” the lawsuit states. “Katie’s suicide was completed without planning and solely in response to the shocking and deeply disturbing information she received from Stanford while alone in her room with no support or resources.”

In a statement to several media outlets, Stanford spokesperson Dee Mostofi refuted the lawsuit’s allegations.

“The Stanford community continues to mourn Katie’s tragic death, and we sympathize with her family for the unimaginable pain that Katie’s passing has caused them,” Mostofi wrote.

“However, we strongly disagree with any allegation that the university is responsible for her death. While we have not yet seen the formal complaint from the Meyer family, we are aware of some of the allegations in the filing, which are false and misleading,” Mostofi added.

A senior studying international relations and history, Meyer made two key saves in a penalty shootout to help Stanford win the 2019 national championship. She was part of the prestigious 2022 Mayfield Fellows program — which aims to develop students to lead technology ventures—and awaited acceptance at Stanford Law School.

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