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Parents of slain University of Utah student will be paid historic $13.5MILLION settlement after her explicit photos were shared by campus cop and she was murdered by her 'sextorting' ex-boyfriend

 Two years to the day after student-athlete Lauren McCluskey was brutally murdered by her abusive ex-boyfriend, the University of Utah announced that it will pay the victim's family a total of $13.5million to settle two separate lawsuits. 

As part of the agreement that was reached on Thursday, the university acknowledged for the first's time that McCluskey's killing in October 2018 was 'preventable.' 

University of Utah President Ruth Watkins previously said that there was not 'any reason to believe this tragedy could have been prevented.'

Lauren McCluskey's parents have reached a $13.5million  settlement with the University of Utah stemming from her October 2018 murder on campus

Lauren McCluskey's parents have reached a $13.5million  settlement with the University of Utah stemming from her October 2018 murder on campus 

Matthew and Jill McCluskey, Lauren's parents, will receive $10.5million, and an additional $3million will go to a foundation they have started in their daughter's name

Matthew and Jill McCluskey, Lauren's parents, will receive $10.5million, and an additional $3million will go to a foundation they have started in their daughter's name 

News of the settlement comes a week after Salt Lake City's top prosecutor announced that former University of Utah campus police officer Miguel Deras will not face criminal charges for sharing McCluskey's explicit photos with his co-workers after she complained she was being blackmailed by her ex-boyfriend, 37-year-old Melvin Rowland.

Less than two weeks after she first contacted campus police about the 'sextortion' plot, Rowland fatally shot her in a university parking lot, before turning the gun on himself. 

District Attorney Sim Gill said last week that the former officer’s actions were 'definitely reckless,' but there is no state law addressing the misconduct.

'We’re incensed like everyone else by the behavior. It was inappropriate,' Gill said. 'But if there’s not a statute, there’s nothing we can do.'

Gill's decision to not charge Deras sparked protests in Salt Lake City and earned criticism from McCluskey's mother, who warned that it could create a chilling effect for women in similar situations.

Matthew and Jill McCluskey, Lauren's parents, had filed two separate lawsuits against University of Utah and related entities, with their first complaint brought last year seeking $56million and alleging that officials could have done more to protect their daughter after claiming she contacted campus police multiple times in the weeks leading up to her death saying her ex-boyfriend was harassing her. 

On October 22, 2018, McCluskey was shot dead in the back of a car by her jilted boyfriend, 37-year-old Melvin Rowland
The man was a registered sex offender and lied about his age

On October 22, 2018, McCluskey was shot dead in the back of a car by her jilted boyfriend, 37-year-old Melvin Rowland. The man was a registered sex offender and lied about his age 

In this October 21, 2019 file photo, University of Utah students gather after walking out of classes during a demonstration over McCluskey's death

In this October 21, 2019 file photo, University of Utah students gather after walking out of classes during a demonstration over McCluskey's death

Lauren repeatedly calls campus police about ex before death
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The family's second lawsuit, filed in June of this year, accused the University of Utah of discriminating against McCluskey based on her gender by ignoring her pleas for protection.

'The University of Utah acknowledges that the murder of Lauren McCluskey was a brutal, senseless, and preventable tragedy and acknowledges the unspeakable loss the McCluskey family has suffered and continues to suffer,' Thursday's settlement reads, reported The Salt Lake Tribune.

As part of the agreement, the university will pay $10.5million to the student's parents and donate an additional $3million to the Lauren McCluskey Foundation dedicated to improving safety on college campuses across the country. 

University of Utah also will build an indoor track for McCluskey's former track and field team by 2030 and name it after her.  

McCluskey, a senior and track-and-field athlete from Pullman, Washington, met Rowland at a local bar where he was working as a bouncer and began a relationship with him in September 2018. A friend said the 37-year-old man presented himself as a 28-year-old community college student named Shawn.

According to one of the lawsuits, some of Lauren's closest friends sounded the alarm about her boyfriend, saying that he was possessive, controlling, manipulative and prone to jealous rages and stalking behavior, and raising concerns that the senior was in 'an unhealthy and potentially harmful relationship.' 

A month later, McCluskey learned Rowland's true identity, including his actual age and the fact that he was a registered sex offender. At that point she decided to end the relationship. 

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