Category Archives: Legal

Higher education in the courtroom.


Appeals Court Reverses Conviction Over Threatening Poem Sent to Professor

A federal appeals court has tossed out the conviction of a former Utah Valley University student who was found guilty of a felony for sending a professor an email containing a violent anti-immigrant poem, according to reports by the Associated Press and The Salt Lake Tribune.

The poem, sent from the email username “siegheil_neocon” to a professor at the University of Utah, contained such phrases as “we will … detain you and slay you, by a bowie knife shoved up into the skull” and “we put the noo…


Father of Student Who Jumped Off Bridge Settles With Cornell U.

The father of a Cornell University student who committed suicide by jumping off a bridge has settled a lawsuit with the university and the City of Ithaca, reports The Post-Standard, in Syracuse, N.Y.

Bradley M. Ginsburg, a freshman at Cornell, jumped off a bridge near the campus in 2010. The next year, his father, Howard Ginsburg, sued the university and the city for not outfitting the bridge in a way that prevented attempts at suicide. The lawsuit raised questions about the nature of colleges’ …


Paterno Estate Can Challenge NCAA Sanctions Against Penn State, Judge Rules

A Pennsylvania judge has ruled that a lawsuit in which the family of the former football coach Joe Paterno challenged the NCAA’s sanctions against Pennsylvania State University can go forward, but the judge pared back the scope of the suit and said three active members of the university’s Board of Trustees, among other individuals, could not remain as plaintiffs in the case, according to reports by the Centre Daily Times and the Associated Press.

The ruling, by Senior Judge John B. Leete of the …


Appeals Court Says $380-Million Suit Against Yeshiva U. Was Filed Too Late

A federal appellate court has ruled that plaintiffs in a $380-million lawsuit against Yeshiva University, who alleged that the institution had covered up decades of physical and sexual abuse of students at its high school, cannot sue for damages because they waited too long to file their complaint, The New York Times reports.

The ruling, issued on Thursday by a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, affirms a lower-court judge’s decision in January to dismiss the …


Bible College’s President Pleads Guilty to Fraud Charges

Reginald Wayne Miller, the founder and president of Cathedral Bible College, in South Carolina, pleaded guilty on Wednesday to four felony and two misdemeanor charges stemming from accusations that he forced foreign students to work for little pay and threatened to revoke their visas if they refused, The State reported.

Students had told investigators that their classes were a sham and that they lived in harsh conditions. Mr. Miller, who was arrested earlier this year, pleaded guilty to charges …


Morgan State U. Professor Gets 3 Years in Prison for Grant Fraud

A professor at Morgan State University has been sentenced to three years in prison after being convicted of defrauding the National Science Foundation of grant money, according to the Associated Press and a news release from the U.S. attorney’s office in Baltimore.

A judge also ordered the professor, Manoj Kumar Jha, to pay $105,726 in restitution. According to trial testimony, Mr. Jha fraudulently obtained $200,000 in grant money to finance a highway project and then used the money for personal…


Judge Upholds $3-Million Award in Chicago State U. Whistle-Blower Case

An Illinois judge has denied the appeal of Chicago State University in a whistle-blower case that is set to cost the university $3-million, the Chicago Tribune reports.

In February a jury found that James Crowley, the university’s former senior legal counsel, had been fired for reporting misconduct by the university’s leadership. The jury awarded Mr. Crowley $2.5-million and ordered that he be given his job back. Later, Judge James P. McCarthy of the Circuit Court of Cook County, Ill., increased…


FBI Raids 2 Campuses of Shuttered For-Profit College

Federal Bureau of Investigation agents on Tuesday raided two campuses of Anamarc College as well as the home of the shuttered for-profit institution’s owners, the El Paso Times reported.

The agents searched one of the college’s two campuses in El Paso, Tex., and its campus in Santa Teresa, N.M. The college closed in June because of financial troubles. It offered programs in medical fields and at one point enrolled more than 1,200 students on three campuses.

FBI officials said they were executing…


Court Sides With U. of Missouri in Fight Over Teacher-Prep Syllabi

A state appeals court has ruled that the University of Missouri system does not have to release course syllabi, as they are the intellectual property of the faculty and therefore exempt from the state’s open-records law, the Columbia Daily Tribune reports.

The decision, handed down on Tuesday, is the latest chapter in a bid by the National Council on Teacher Quality to rank teacher-preparation programs by obtaining course syllabi and other materials from institutions nationwide. The group sued a…


Missouri Court Upholds Ex-Student’s Win in Suit Against Vatterott College

A Missouri appeals court has upheld a former student’s win in a lawsuit against Vatterott College, a for-profit institution that has campuses in that state and others in the Midwest, The Kansas City Star reported.

The student, Jennifer Kerr, had accused the college of deceiving her about the degree program in which she had enrolled. A jury last year awarded her $27,676 in actual damages and $13-million in punitive damages. A judge later reduced the $13-million award to about $2-million, to compl…