DENVER — Denver Public Schools board member Tay Anderson filed a defamation lawsuit against six people and the non-profit organization Black Lives Matter 5280 over a series of unsubstantiated sexual assault allegations levied against him this past year.
Anderson has been the target of allegations beginning in March, when BLM 5280 released a public statement claiming a woman came forward to them in February, alleging Anderson sexually assaulted her.
And in May, Denver parent Mary Brooks-Fleming told the state House Judiciary Committee during public testimony that 62 sexual assault victims had come to her for help regarding a single individual. Although she did not name Anderson, it was implied that he was the culprit, according to the lawsuit.
Anderson is also suing members of BLM 5280’s leadership team — Apryl Alexander, Ari Lipscomb, Amy Brown, and Michael Diaz Rivera — and a sixth person, Jeeva Senthilnathan, who claimed in an online video that there were more victims of Anderson out there.
None of the alleged victims came forward or cooperated with law enforcement, the suit alleges. An independent report from Investigative Law Group, commissioned by the DPS board earlier this year, found the sexual assault allegations were not substantiated.
However, the report did say Anderson had “flirtatious social media contact” with a 16-year-old Denver Public Schools (DPS) student while he was a board member and made coercive and intimidating social media posts toward witnesses.
The board censured Anderson in September for what members said was inappropriate conduct with students.
The lawsuit, filed Tuesday in Denver District Court, claims the motivation for the accusations was resentment by BLM 5280 members toward Anderson’s growing political clout in the city’s progressive community.
“The BLM Defendants had no interest in working collaboratively with him or sharing the proverbial spotlight – they wanted him out and by any means necessary,” the lawsuit reads.
In the lawsuit, Anderson accuses BLM 5280 leadership of conspiring with Brooks-Fleming to publish and release false information about Anderson to make him out to be a sexual predator.
Denver7 has reached out to BLM 5280 for a comment, but they have yet to return our messages.
Anderson is seeking more than $1 million in damages and a trial by jury.