ENMU basketball players file lawsuit, allege sexual assault from former coach’s husband
[anvplayer video=”5174643″ station=”998122″]
Three former Eastern New Mexico University women’s basketball players filed a lawsuit Thursday detailing alleged sexual assault from the coach’s husband. The lawsuit also claims former head coach Meghan De Los Reyes, athletics director Paul Weir, and other university administrators knew about the alleged assault and did nothing to prevent further abuse.
According to the lawsuit, the players were forced by their former head coach to attend one-on-one “treatments” with her husband, Glen De Los Reyes. Many of those “treatments” reportedly happened at the couple’s private home. The lawsuit claims De Los Reyes fondled the players’ genitals, pinned them down, and even left bruise marks. At several points, the lawsuit states the players asked De Los Reyes to stop, but he continued saying he needed to “finish the treatment.” De Los Reyes reportedly admitted to recording his treatments without players’ knowledge, according to the lawsuit.
The reportedly forced “treatments” began in August after a mandatory team dinner at the couple’s home; however, the lawsuit claims there were reports against De Los Reyes as far back as spring 2022. The players say their coach insisted they were required to attend “treatments” with her husband. According to the lawsuit, players knew refusing “treatments” would lead to reduced playing time which could impact their athletics scholarships. The lawsuit also claims the coach instructed players to lie about the “treatments” for various reasons.
The lawsuit details several incidents between players and De Los Reyes during the fall of 2022. The most notable includes an incident when the coach reportedly confiscated one player’s car keys after she received a traffic citation. The suit says that player was told she had to come to the couple’s home to pick up her keys. The player was reportedly forced to undergo a “treatment” with the coach’s husband to receive her keys. After the treatment, the coach reportedly revealed to the player her keys were inside her office on campus.
The lawsuit states the coach’s husband had a reputation among university trainers for being a “creep.” The lawsuit described De Los Reyes as an unlicensed and unqualified athletic trainer that acted like an agent of the university. De Los Reyes reportedly visited the team on campus many times including inside the women’s locker room.
According to the lawsuit, multiple university trainers noticed the players showed signs of abuse from De Los Reyes despite saying they did not attend treatments. Those trainers reportedly approached athletics director – and former UNM men’s basketball coach – Paul Weir with their concerns. The lawsuit includes several sections alleging Weir was aware of previous allegations involving the coach’s husband. The lawsuit states Weir met with De Los Reyes in October and attempted to move his “treatments” to a supervised location on campus. Despite that meeting, the lawsuit argues the abuse continued.
Frustrated with inaction from Weir, the lawsuit states a group of trainers reported the alleged abuse to ENMU’s human resources department. HR reps reportedly met with the players involved soon after. The players claim those meetings immediately resulted in retaliation from their coach – who reportedly reduced their playing time, forced them to run extra laps, and more. Coach De Los Reyes allegedly called one player’s mother to report her daughter was “spreading false rumors.” The lawsuit also claims the coach insisted another player was gay because she didn’t like the “treatments.”
The lawsuit alleges ENMU did not conduct any formal investigation into the allegations until February 2023. It was around that time Glen De Los Reyes was reportedly banned from campus, but the lawsuit claims he still visited the team and texted players about “treatments.”
According to the lawsuit, AD Weir reportedly met with the players in February and said he was “sorry they were assaulted.” The suit claims he then intimidated the players not to report De Los Reye’s alleged abuse or file any lawsuits against him or the school or they might lose their scholarships. The lawsuit also claims multiple witnesses saw Weir tell the coach to “squash the rumors” during an away game in Texas.
The lawsuit states the players were forced to finish the spring semester online and are transferring to new schools. It argues their academic and athletic careers have been “irreparably harmed.”
On top of the allegations against De Los Reyes’ and Weir, the lawsuit also claims the university was negligent and violated New Mexico’s Human Rights Act and Title IX. The players are demanding a jury trial.
Eastern New Mexico University released a statement Friday regarding the lawsuit:
Eastern New Mexico University is in the process of carefully reviewing the allegations made in that lawsuit which was filed on April 27, 2023. Further actions are being taken in conjunction with our attorneys to properly address the allegations in appropriate court proceedings and not engage in this matter outside of that proper forum. Based upon advice from counsel, it would be improper to comment further as the matter is now in litigation. However, ENMU will continue to strive toward providing a safe learning environment for its students, faculty, and staff.
This lawsuit was filed just about a week after 2 former NMSU men’s basketball players filed a lawsuit following their own sexual assault allegations. Similar to the ENMU lawsuit, the NMSU players claim they were assaulted multiple times throughout the season and their coaches did nothing about it.
On Friday, Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham announced she is planning to pursue anti-hazing legislation during the 2024 legislative session following incidents at NMSU and ENMU:
“I am appalled by the allegations at New Mexico public universities involving hazing and abuse – outrage doesn’t go far enough. It is the responsibility of higher education leadership and governing boards to establish a safe, healthy environment for students, and I’m incredibly disappointed that it does not appear to be a priority at some of the state’s public colleges and universities,” the governor said in a statement. “I — along with my administration — have ZERO tolerance for abuse of any kind, and I will root out cultures of hazing and abuse at every higher education institution in New Mexico.”