Saying he is tired of “unfair and speculative reporting,” former LSU head football coach Les Miles is calling for the release of a report resulting from a secret 2013 investigation into allegations of sexual harassment by Miles, a report the coach had previously sought to keep secret.
A longtime attorney for Miles, New York-based Peter Ginsberg, said in an email Wednesday that releasing the report is the “only way” to clarify what Ginsberg called “unfair and speculative reporting in the past week” about the investigation. Miles had previously intervened in a lawsuit filed in January by USA Today against LSU in an effort to prevent the findings from becoming public.
USA Today reported last week that the investigation, conducted by the law firm Taylor Porter, probed whether Miles sexually harassed students and made sexist comments about women. The investigation found his actions improper, but did not rise to the level of breaking the law, according to the newspaper, citing sources. Around the same time period, Miles entered a settlement with a student who he was accused of harassing, sources confirmed to this newspaper.
Reached by phone last week, Miles denied making any improper advances toward students, but he did not address the settlement. Ginsberg said a description of the settlement was “incomplete and inaccurate.”
Ginsberg wrote Wednesday that the Taylor Porter report addressed “certain claims involving Coach Miles” and that the release of its findings “is the only way to clarify the misinformation and to halt the unsubstantiated attacks on Coach Miles.”
USA Today sued LSU in January after the university refused to turn over a copy of the investigation in response to a public records request. LSU’s attorneys said making the report public would deprive Miles of his constitutional right to privacy. Shortly after USA Today filed suit, attorneys for Miles joined the case.
No motion has yet been made to officially release the report, according to Baton Rouge court records, and lawyer Scott Sternberg, who represents USA Today, declined to comment about the case. But Sternberg said he’d also just received Ginsberg’s letter and said it still remains the judge’s decision whether the report is ultimately released. Sternberg often represents this newspaper in legal matters as well, but The Advocate | The Times-Picayune is not involved in the Miles case.
Still, Miles and his legal team’s request is a significant development that comes days before LSU will release a long-awaited report Friday from the law firm Husch Blackwell over how the university has handled past complaints of sexual misconduct and domestic violence on campus.