Four people have been arrested in the rape of an LSU student who was left afterwards in a neighborhood near where she was fatally struck by a car about an hour later, authorities said.
Kaivon Washington, 18, and a 17-year-old, who is not being named because he is a juvenile, were each booked on a count of third-degree rape, booking documents say.
Casen Carver, 18, and Everette Lee, 28, face charges of principal to third-degree rape. All three men turned themselves in Monday, while the juvenile turned himself in Sunday, deputies said.
Madison Brooks, a 19-year-old sophomore at LSU’s Manship School of Mass Communication from Madisonville, had been drinking at Reggie’s, a Tigerland bar, where she met the 17-year-old, and left with him and the three other suspects, deputies said.
Surveillance footage and interviews with the suspects showed that she was obviously intoxicated when she left.
The group pulled over after leaving Reggie’s, arrest documents say. Brooks had asked them to bring her home because she was too drunk and hadn’t been able to find her friends, deputies said they were told.
Deputies say Washington and the 17-year old raped Brooks in the back seat of a car.
A third-degree rape charge involves cases where the victim is “incapable of resisting or of understanding the nature of the act” because of intoxication, according to state law.
Deputies said Brooks had a blood-alcohol level of .319, nearly four times the legal limit to drive and enough to give someone alcohol poisoning and render them unconscious.
Carver and Lee, 28, sat in the front seats while the rapes happened, the arrest documents say.
Carver said he felt uncomfortable with the sex happening in his back seats and “hated it.” When asked if Brooks was too impaired to consent to sex, Carver responded, “I guess.” Carver said he told the two to stop.
Brooks was unable to tell them where she lived and the four dropped her off in a subdivision, the documents say; she was later hit by a car and killed on Burbank Drive shortly before 2:50 a.m. Jan. 15.
Deputies did not say whether the suspects are or had been LSU students.
Joe Long, defense attorney for Carver, provided a statement late Monday night. He had turned his client into deputies earlier that day.
“This was tragedy, but not crime,” Long said. “When all the evidence is known, everyone will see this was not a crime,” Long said.
Brooks’ death strikes a campus community that has faced enormous scrutiny over alcohol-related deaths and sexual assault and harassment. News of the arrests led to immediate calls from the university’s president for changes.
In a statement, LSU President William Tate IV said Brooks “should not have been taken from us in this way” and that “what happened to her was evil, and our legal system will parcel out justice.”
Tate said it was time for “our collective grief and outrage” to lead to action on underage drinking by the university and the Baton Rouge business community.
Tate noted that all but one of the men accused in Brooks’ rape were underage but had been able to drink in a local bar. He said he plans to call a meeting of local bars and other businesses “to discuss how their responsibilities directly impact the safety of our students.”
“We will work openly against any business that doesn’t join us in efforts toward creating a safer environment for our students,” he said. “Enough is enough.”
In 2017, LSU student and fraternity pledge Max Gruver died from alcohol poisoning after a night of drinking at his fraternity, Phi Delta Theta.
Gruver’s blood-alcohol level was .495, six times the legal limit to drive.
When asked, Casey Rayborn Hicks, spokeswoman for the Sheriff’s Office, said investigators don’t plan to arrest the three men and juvenile with further counts in connection with Brooks’ death. She said the Sheriff’s Office would leave any determination about Reggie’s culpability in the death and rape to the Baton Rouge Alcoholic Beverage Control office.
A message left at Reggie’s wasn’t returned Monday.
Brooks, a graduate of St. Scholastica Academy in Covington, was a member of the Alpha Phi sorority. The sorority issued a statement on Facebook that said she was a sister who “had made a lasting impact on all of us.”
The sorority called her a hero because she had donated “her heart and kidneys to save others.”
“We send our deepest sympathies to her family and friends during this incredibly difficult time,” the sorority said.