UW Sorority Sisters Ask Judge to Continue Lawsuit Against National Officials, Transgender Member
Plaintiffs’ attorneys claim recruits, members have ‘fled’ the house
- Published In: Other News & Features
- Last Updated: Jul 07, 2023
Six University of Wyoming sorority sisters asked a judge to continue their lawsuit against their national officials and a transgender student this week. (Credit: Screenshot/Google Maps)
By Ellen Fike
Special to the Wyoming Truth
Six University of Wyoming sorority sisters suing their national headquarters and a transgender member said the organization’s administrators can’t pretend they’re above the law, in a response they filed against Kappa Kappa Gamma’s motion to dismiss the case.
“Kappa’s motion to dismiss is unsurprising in some ways, as it provides the consistent response the Plaintiffs have received since they first raised their concerns in September 2022: sit down and shut up. Or quit,” a response filed by the women’s attorneys on Wednesday read.
Last month, attorneys for the national Kappa Kappa Gamma (KKG) Fraternity, fraternity council president Mary Pat Rooney and Wyoming-based Kappa Kappa Gamma Building Co. filed a motion to dismiss the lawsuit against them. Artemis Langford, a transgender UW student and KKG member, filed a separate motion to dismiss the suit.
Jaylyn Westenbroek, Hannah Holtmeier, Allison Coghan, Grace Choate, Madeline Ramar and Megan Kosar have claimed in court filings that they felt unsafe in the sorority house after Langford was admitted to the sorority last fall. Langford did not live in the house, but visited regularly.
The women’s attorneys responded in separate filings to both motions to dismiss, arguing against KKG’s claims of lack of jurisdiction and affirming the women’s belief that Langford is a man and should not be a member of the sorority.
“Through Kappa’s actions, they have created a breach of contract as to both the sorority experience and paid housing experience that these young women were promised,” attorneys Cassie Craven and John Knepper wrote in a response this week.
The attorneys also said the six women have experienced post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety and emotional damages due to Langford being admitted to the sorority. They also claimed many members and recruits have “fled” the sorority house for the same reason. Due to the lack of new members, the attorneys pointed to the possibility that the house will close and the UW chapter itself will fold.
Craven and Knepper said that unless a judge continues the lawsuit and rules in favor of the plaintiffs, they will never reap the benefits of a college sorority experience.
The women also asked the court to rule that KKG officials repay each of them at least $9,100 to cover their room, board and sorority dues. The rest of the monetary damages the women are seeking will be attested to at the time of trial, the response said.
In the written response to Langford’s motion to dismiss, the attorneys referred to Langford as a man and used he/him pronouns throughout the document.
“Plaintiffs are living the reality of Langford’s biological, sex-based differences,” the response said. “When a 6’2 person who weighs 260 pounds and has benefitted from male puberty sits in a sorority dining room — staring and scowling at the young women who made the complaint — that moment is not just a disagreement among ‘us’ girls.”
Craven and Knepper also questioned why the young women were considered villains when a “large man pushes his way into an all-female space.” They also said the women want the court to hear their voices and prevent victimization from occurring to other women who may be afraid to stand up for themselves.
“Women must no longer be silent victims in response to men who attempt to play by their own set of rules,” the response concluded.