Attorney Michael Avenatti — who is suing President Trump on behalf of adult film actress Stephanie Clifford — is now suing a Florida fraternity.
In the initial complaint, which Avenatti filed in U.S. District Court in the Middle District of Florida’s Orlando Division and then subsequently posted to Twitter, Delta Sigma Phi fraternity members Brandon Simpson, Jacob Pelkey, Andre Perales, Jonathan Landrum, and Matt Farley — who all attend the University of Central Florida (UCF) — are named as defendants, accused of posting “revenge porn” on a Facebook page called “The Dog Pound.” Delta Sigma Phi is also named as a defendant:
BREAKING: The Delta Sigma Phi fraternity and others have been illegally posting naked videos of innocent young women on a secret Facebook page called the “Dog Pound.” Here is the lawsuit we just filed to end this disgusting behavior. #ZeroTolerancehttps://t.co/2IYS70Xsuc pic.twitter.com/HnSWNLdbLW
— Michael Avenatti (@MichaelAvenatti) June 14, 2018
Avenatti is representing Kathryn Novak, an Arizona resident, who alleges that she and defendant Brandon Simpson were in a long-distance relationship and would see each other several times a month. During consensual sexual encounters, Simpson allegedly recorded he and Novak without her knowledge or consent, and proceeded to post photos and videos of her naked body and her face online.
In October, Simpson is accused of distributing a video of he and Novak having sex to roughly 200 other members of the Delta Sigma Phi fraternity, with not one member dissuading Simpson from publishing and distributing the video. The complaint also alleges that Simpson shared sexts from Novak — which she sent on the condition that the explicit images would remain private — with members of his fraternity. These photos and videos were then posted to the secret (meaning invite-only and not searchable) “Dog Pound” page, which the complaint alleges also hosted other sexual photos and videos of young women taken without their knowledge or consent.
Avenatti also cited the Title IX portion of the UCF student handbook, which expressly prohibits “Sexual Exploitation,” which is defined on page 43 as:
1. Recording or photographing private sexual activity and/or a person’s intimate parts (including genitalia, groin, breasts, or buttocks) without consent;
2. Disseminating or posting images of private sexual activity and/or a person’s intimate parts (including genitalia, groin, breasts, or buttocks) without consent;
3. Allowing third parties to observe private sexual activity from a hidden location (e.g. closet) or through electronic means (e.g. Skype or livestreaming of images)
UCF Dean of Students Dr. Adrienne Frame did not immediately return Grit Post’s calls requesting comment. This article will be updated in the event she responds.
Scott Alden is a freelance contributor covering national politics, education, and environmental issues. He is a proud Toledo University graduate, and lives in the suburbs of Detroit.