USTA in hot water, accused of trying to prohibit key evidence in sexual abuse lawsuit in attempt to dismiss Pam Shriver case

Sunday, 03 March 2024 at 11:00
pam shriver
The USTA (United States Tennis Association) has landed in hot water after being accused of dismissing key testimony in a sexual abuse lawsuit.
Pam Shriver testified at a seven-hour disposition last April in support of Kylie McKenzie, who filed a lawsuit against the USTA for failing to protect her from sexual abuse. McKenzie had accused her coach Anibal Aranda, of touching her inappropriately as a teenager.
In a filing this week, however, it was revealed the USTA are attempting to persuade the judge presiding over the case to dismiss Shriver's testimony as inadmissible and irrelevant. They say Shriver had no direct knowledge of McKenzie's case.
The New York based organisation is also having to reject claims that Shriver, a 22-time doubles Grand Slam winner, was advised not to speak too much about her own experiences with sexual abuse and keep a distance from McKenzie's lawyer.
One of McKenzie's lawyers told The Athletic: "Here is what happened. Staciellen Mischel (USTA's Deputy Chief Legal Officer) cautioned Shriver against speaking out about her personal experience of sexual abuse as a young tennis player, including ‘warning’ Shriver against speaking with Ms. McKenzie’s counsel in this case.
"Mischel issued that warning soon after Shriver came forward publicly about the sexual misconduct she experienced as a young tennis star, and soon after Shriver and Ms. McKenzie became acquainted over their shared experiences of abuse. Shriver testified that she interpreted this conversation as a warning from USTA: ‘don’t say too much.' Evidence that defendants attempted to silence victims can be interpreted by a jury as evidence of gross negligence."

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