These charges are horrific. It’s certainly not the sort of thing one expects to happen at Dartmouth.

CNN reports:

Lawsuit: ‘Predatory’ Dartmouth professors plied students with alcohol and raped them

Three former Dartmouth College professors turned the school’s Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences into a “21st Century Animal House,” where female students were subjected to rape and sexual harassment, a federal lawsuit alleges.

Tenured professors Todd Heatherton, William Kelley, and Paul Whalen treated women as sex objects, the lawsuit from seven women claims. The men, who no longer are allowed on campus, coerced them into drinking and made the women feel as if their success depended on their willingness to go along with the “alcohol-saturated” culture the prominent researchers created, according to the complaint.

Kelley and Whalen have not responded to CNN’s requests for comment. In a statement through his lawyer, Heatherton categorically denied “playing any role in creating a toxic environment at Dartmouth College,” and said he was disturbed by the allegations. None of the plaintiffs were his graduate students, the statement adds.

The lawsuit, filed Thursday, comes as US universities continue to grapple with how to handle allegations of campus sexual misconduct and their obligations under Title IX, the federal law that bars discrimination based on sex, including harassment, in federally funded education programs and activities.