Members Of UCO Cheer Team File Restraining Order Following Recent Suspension

Tuesday, April 13th 2021, 6:11 pm
By: Hunter McKee

EDMOND, Okla. -

From the cheer mats to the courtroom. A group of cheerleaders at the University of Central Oklahoma is taking the university to court. They want a judge to approve a restraining order that could let the team compete.

According to the restraining order, a number of members on the UCO cheer team believe that the current hazing investigation of the team is full of false accusations and their attorney said the cheerleaders have been denied their due process.

Last month, University President, Patti Neuhold-Ravikumar issued a statement regarding reports of hazing. 

According to the restraining order, filed in Oklahoma County court, some of the allegations stemmed from a team bonding event, which took place in August.

Related: UCO Cheer Team Suspended Over Hazing Incident

Related: UCO Officials To Hear Suspended Cheer Team Members' Appeal Following Reports Of Team Hazing

It goes on to say almost seven months after the event, a message was sent informing the team about hazing allegations. Between March 1 and 18, some of the team members were interviewed for the investigation.

Within the document, it said university officials,"...found the cheer team guilty of a series of charges and prohibited all members from participating in cheer team activities for 2 years..."

The school's official investigation report listed 10 hazing acts including, team members being blind folded, alcohol was provided to underage members, and members were asked to answer questions that were sexual in nature.

However, court documents said it appears some of the "cheer team members were designated as 'instigators' and received more severe punishment."

It states one of those members called the university and asked what she was accused of doing, but the school did not tell her.

In the document, it says cheer team members were never allowed to see any of the evidence against them at any time before UCO's decision and that "they have never been given any notice, much less fair notice. They certainly did not get a meaningful opportunity to be heard pre-suspension."

News 9 reached out to UCO, but the university declined to comment due to pending litigation.