A former Kennesaw State University cheerleader who took a knee during the national anthem at a KSU football game has reached an out-of-court settlement with the school.
From the Marietta Daily Journal:
Former KSU cheerleader Tommia Dean filed a lawsuit in 2018 after receiving backlash to her public protest with four other cheerleaders during the national anthem at a KSU football game in September 2017.
Dean listed KSU’s then-President Sam Olens as a defendant in the civil suit, alongside Scott Whitlock and Matt Griffin who worked for the KSU athletics department at the time.
After Dean reached a $145,000 settlement with the Georgia Department of Administrative Services, the lawsuit was dropped.
“A compromise has been reached,” the agreement states. “The intent of this agreement is to buy peace of mind from future controversy and forestall further attorney’s fees, costs, or other expenses of litigation, and further that this agreement represents the compromise, economic resolution of disputed claims and, as such, shall not be deemed in any manner an admission, finding, conclusion, evidence or indication for any purposes whatsoever, that the KSU defendants acted contrary to the law or otherwise violated the rights of Dean.”
The terms of the settlement stipulate that Dean will receive $93,000. Her attorneys will receive approximately $52,000 to cover legal costs.
In her lawsuit, Dean accused school officials of prohibiting her and other cheerleaders from taking the field during the national anthem at subsequent games following her initial protest. Her lawsuit also claimed Cobb Sheriff Neil Warren and former state Rep. Earl Ehrhart were racially motivated in persuading the school to prevent national anthem protests from continuing.
ESPN reports that Dean and other cheerleaders were only allowed back onto the field during the national anthem after the University System of Georgia concluded that their actions were protected by the U.S. Constitution.
Kudos to Dean for not only standing up against police brutality, but securing the bag.