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Civil lawsuit ruling goes against KU's Collins

A Douglas County District Country judge ruled in favor of a woman who had filed a civil lawsuit against Kansas guard Sherron Collins over an assault.

In the lawsuit, Jessica J. Brown accused Collins of exposing himself and rubbing against her despite being told the stop. The incident occurred on May 18, 2007 in an elevator at Jayhawker Towers, where she worked.

Last month, Collins was served a summons and petition but made no defense.

Through a statement released by the Kansas athletic department, Collins said he is innocent.

“I am aware of the allegation and cooperated with the investigation last summer. I am 100 percent innocent of any inappropriate behavior.

“I was not fully aware of what was expected of me in the civil suit and what my responsibilities were in that matter. I’m sorry and I intended no disrespect to the court. I will do my best to correct this and to prove that this allegation is not true.”

Kansas Coach Bill Self said not understanding the process doesn’t absolve Collins from his responsibility.

“Sherron said he didn’t fully understand the legal process,” Self said in a statement. “While I just became aware of the court’s actions, I’m very disappointed in the fact that Sherron didn’t follow through on his responsibilities regarding the civil suit. I am confident he will work diligently to address this situation.

“This is a very serious allegation that we have not taken lightly. We were made aware of the allegation over 13 months ago. Sherron fully cooperated with the investigation and maintains that the allegation is false. Based on the information I have received, Sherron has my full support.”

Brown claimed damages for humiliation, mental anguish and severe emotional pain. Judge Jack Murphy granted judgment for damages for more than $75,000. A hearing will be set to determine the exact amount of damages.

No criminal charges were filed.

Blair Kerkhoff | bkerkhoff@kcstar.com

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