Former Duke soccer player sues over graduation

May. 28, 2014 @ 06:41 PM

Lewis McLeod, former midfielder for Duke University’s men’s soccer team, has sued the college for withholding his psychology degree and banning him from graduation earlier this month.

McLeod, 23, was investigated by Durham detectives last fall over allegations that he sexually assaulted a female student, according to police spokeswoman Kammie Michael. However, no charges were filed against McLeod.

In the complaint filed this week in Durham County Superior Court, McLeod’s lawyers wrote that Duke’s Office of Student Conduct ran its own investigation, determined that McLeod was guilty and expelled him. The complaint alleges that McLeod wasn’t allowed to present his side of the story and couldn’t respond to allegations against him.

He told lawyers that he met the female student in a bar and that their sex was consensual.

McLeod, who had an offer to start a job on Wall Street in July, is an Australia native whose visa expired at the end of the semester.

He was still in the United States on Wednesday, said his attorney, Rachel Hitch of the Schwartz & Shaw law firm in Raleigh. If he’s not able to secure employment soon, he’ll have to leave the country.

It’s unclear when the judge might rule on McLeod’s degree issue.

She declined to comment about the case. Keith Lawrence, spokesman for Duke University, said the college wouldn’t comment on pending litigation.

McLeod played 18 games for the soccer team in 2011 and four games in 2012 before he suffered a season-ending injury.

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