A former K-State student cited in a federal court lawsuit against the university who allegedly raped two different women in 2014 and 2015 was found guilty by jury of one of those counts Friday afternoon in the Riley County District Courthouse.
Jared Gihring, who was in the courtroom with Brenda Jordan as counsel, was found guilty for the 2014 rape of Sara Weckhorst inside a fraternity house.
Weckhorst is the plaintiff in the Title IX suit against KSU. She claims the university did not do its due diligence in addressing Gihring after she informed KSU of the rape. K-State argued off-campus rapes are not in its jurisdiction, though Title IX laws differ from that assessment.
The jury also decided Girhing was not guilty for another count of rape that involved Crystal Stroup. Stroup said she was raped by Gihring at the University Crossing apartment complex in Manhattan in 2015.
Both Weckhorst and Stroup were K-State students.
Tears from all sides, including family members, filled the courtroom, with Weckhorst and Stroup in a long, emotional embrace after Judge Grant Bannister read the jury’s verdict.
Gihring sunk his head into the table after the third count — the rape of Weckhorst — was read as guilty.
Before the jury made its decision, Jordan argued the intoxication levels of Weckhorst and Stroup were subjective and that they were able to consent. She told the jury that while it may not like the factors alcohol played into each case, it was important for it to remember something.
“This is college life,” Jordan said.
The jury was made up of seven women and five men. The alternate juror was male. It left to deliberate before the lunch hour following closing statements from the defense and prosecution, and returned to the courtroom around 3 p.m.
Sentencing for Gihring is scheduled for Aug. 17 at 9 a.m.
Riley County Deputy Attorney Barry Disney said Gihring could expect a sentence of at least 155 months in the Kansas Department of Corrections, depending on criminal history.