Tennis Player Awarded $9 Million in Lawsuit Against USTA Over Sexual Assault

Tennis Player Awarded  Million in Lawsuit Against USTA Over Sexual Assault

Kylie McKenzie, a 25-year-old tennis player from Arizona, has been awarded $9 million in a federal lawsuit against the United States Tennis Association (USTA) over allegations of sexual assault. The lawsuit, filed in 2022, claimed that the USTA failed to protect McKenzie from her former coach, Anibal Aranda, who assaulted her at the USTA’s training facility in Orlando, Florida, in 2018.

According to The Athletic, McKenzie stated that she was assaulted by Aranda when she was 19 years old, while they were on a back court at the USTA’s training center. The lawsuit further alleged that the USTA had failed to disclose that Aranda had previously assaulted one of their employees. The U.S. Center for SafeSport, in its investigation, found it “more likely than not” that Aranda had touched McKenzie inappropriately.

During the SafeSport investigation, Aranda denied ever touching McKenzie inappropriately and claimed no recollection of another USTA employee’s allegations against him. The USTA took immediate action to suspend and fire Aranda in response to the allegations. However, McKenzie’s lawsuit argued that the USTA had consciously disregarded the rights and safety of others, including attempts to keep her case quiet.

After a week-long trial in Orlando, a jury awarded McKenzie $3 million in compensatory damages and $6 million in punitive damages. The jury’s decision was based on their determination that the USTA had shown a conscious disregard for the rights and safety of others, partly due to their efforts to keep McKenzie’s case under wraps.

McKenzie, who is striving to revive her tennis career, expressed her validation and hope that her case would inspire other girls to speak out. The USTA, in a statement, expressed sympathy for McKenzie’s experience and announced its intention to pursue all avenues of appeal. The organization argued that the court’s ruling set an unreasonable expectation for victims to report incidents that were unknown to the USTA.

Robert Allard, McKenzie’s attorney, emphasized that the jury’s decision highlighted the USTA’s failure to regulate itself and called for a complete change within the organization to encourage victims to come forward.

Kylie McKenzie, once ranked in the top 10 in the U.S., has endured anxiety, panic attacks, and depression as a result of the assault.

Author: CrimeDoor

1 Response

  1. While it is important to address and take action against sexual assault, it is crucial to approach such cases with caution and ensure that the allegations are thoroughly investigated. In this particular case, it is concerning that Kylie McKenzie was awarded such a substantial amount of money without concrete evidence or a proper legal process. The USTA should have been given the opportunity to defend themselves and present their side of the story. Without a fair trial, it is difficult to determine the true extent of the incident and whether the USTA

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