Cheer coach Monica Aldama and Navarro College were sued by a student for allegedly covering up a sexual assault. In light of the lawsuit, fans wanted to know about the allegations, the case and more.
Why Are Monica Aldama and Navarro College Being Sued?
Madi Lane – a student at Navarro College and a former member of Aldama’s squad — claimed in a court filing that she was sexually assaulted by a teammate, according to documents obtained by Us Weekly. The alleged incident took place during her first semester at the Texas college in 2021.
Lane then claimed that she went to Aldama about the encounter, though the coach urged her to “not make this a big deal.” The student quit the cheer team and alleged that Aldama offered to help her find another team if she kept “quiet” about the situation.
After Lane reported her assault to the campus police, she was allegedly told that “this type of thing happens all the time.” She also claimed she was told that “nothing will happen” and her aggressor would likely not face any consequences.
Has Monica Aldama Or Navarro College Addressed the Allegations?
Neither the college nor the Dancing With the Stars alum initially addressed Lane’s allegations, though Aldama revealed the case had been dropped on November 11, 2023.
“It’s 10 p.m. and I’m just finding my voice today. I have been at a loss for words since 9 a.m. this morning. Today I have cried, I’ve laughed, I’ve felt incredible relief, but I have also been somewhat consumed by sadness and anger,” she began in a lengthy Instagram post. “This morning at about 9 a.m., USA Cheer, the organization that is the national governing body of the sport that I have given my heart and soul to for decades, sent my attorney, Russell Prince, an email informing him that the allegations that were made against me in an April 26, 2023 lawsuit were being dismissed and the complaint against me at USA Cheer was being closed.”
After sharing the letter of dismissal, the reality star went on to claim that she was suspended from USA Cheer in May without a fair investigation. “Evidence be damned, guilty until proven innocent,” she wrote, explaining that she “made countless attempts” to get an interview but was waiting until November 3.
“The real problem was during that six month delay, I was broken, a shell of myself,” Aldama continued. “Navarro Cheer members were constantly attacked online. I was constantly attacked. I couldn’t sleep, I couldn’t eat, and most of the time it was hard to even breathe.”
Aldama concluded the post by urging the organization to be more “transparent” about their investigation processes, claiming that “USA Cheer failed me.”
What Other Legal Troubles Has Navarro College Faced?
Lane’s claims came after Cheer star Jerry Harris was arrested on charges of production of child pornography in September 2020. He was also accused of soliciting sex from minors while at cheerleading competitions.
The Netflix star initially pleaded not guilty in December 2020 to seven felony charges, which included four counts of sexual exploitation of children, one count of enticement, one count of receipt of child pornography and one count of travel with the intent to engage in an illicit sexual contact with a minor.
However, he later changed his plea on two of the counts in February 2022 before his sentencing hearing was held in July 2022. During the hearing, Harris was sentenced to serve 12 years in prison.
“To my victims, I am sorry for all the trauma my abuse has caused you. I am ashamed as I know that I took advantage of your youth and weakness,” the Illinois native said at the time. “I was wrong and selfish. I caused you harm and I do not blame anyone. I regret my decisions and I am deeply sorry.”
Aldama reflected on Harris’ arrest during season 2 of Cheer, which he did not appear on.
“I can’t even wrap my head around how I should feel. This has been a tough year,” the Full Out author said during the season 2 premiere in January 2022. “But then there are moments that are so wonderful. These little moments of success that keep you coming back, just the little things that add up. … I keep putting one foot in front of the other, every single day. I don’t have a choice.”