The salacious allegations of sex parties at the University of Louisville's basketball dormitories has taken a new twist as Kyle Hornback, a current student at UofL, filed suit against escort Katina Powell and Indianapolis Business Journal (IBJ) Book Publishing, LLC. IBJ published Powell’s book, Breaking Cardinal Rules, which details her personal involvement in promoting and facilitating the prostitution of her two daughters and other women in her employ, allegedly for the benefit of UofL basketball players and recruits.
The complaint, filed in Jefferson County Circuit Court by Hornback’s attorney Nader George Shunnarah, seeks designation as a class action on behalf of all University of Louisville students. The suit seeks injunctive relief, declaratory relief, an accounting of the book’s profits to be held by a receiver and compensatory and punitive damages arising from the “oppressive, malicious, willful, wanton, and outrageous” conduct by Powell.
Hornback’s main contention is that as a result of Powell’s engagement, promotion, and advancement of prostitution, UofL students have suffered harm, including to their degrees, their ability to repay student loans, and their ability to find employment after graduation.
The complaint explains that all students have a contract with the University, whereby in exchange for their tuition, students are provided an education and a degree necessary to obtain employment and pay off student loans, and that Powell’s involvement in facilitating prostitution for basketball players and recruits has intentionally interfered with said contract, as well as the business relationship between the University and its students.
In addition to compensatory and punitive damages, the lawsuit demands a trial by jury. However, according to Jon Fleischaker, Chair of the First Amendment & Media Practice Group at Dinsmore & Shohl and counsel to the Kentucky Press Association and The Courier-Journal, “this is a silly lawsuit.” “Whatever you think of Katina Powell, she has a First Amendment right to write about whatever she wants and it appears that at least some of what she wrote is true,” Fleischaker told The Courier Journal.
Here at the Poppe Law Firm, we have many UofL graduates and are diehard Cards fans and are extermely hurt by the allegations against the basketball team; however, not everything that hurts can be a lawsuit, and this looks like one of those times.