Category Archives: Legal

Higher education in the courtroom.

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Former Medical Dean at U. of Southern California Was a Drug User, Newspaper Reports

Updated (7/17/2017, 4:17 p.m.) with news on Dr. Puliafito’s work at the USC Roski Eye Institute.

The dean of the Keck School of Medicine at the University of Southern California was with a woman when she overdosed in a Pasadena hotel room last year, the Los Angeles Times reports.

For more, see this Chronicle article.

That instance was one of many drug-fueled episodes chronicled in the Times report about Carmen A. Puliafito, a renowned eye surgeon who stepped down from his position at the univers…

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Many Academics Have Taken Money From Google Without Disclosing It, Report Finds

The tech giant Google has paid academics up to hundreds of thousands of dollars to research topics that support the company’s business practices, according to an investigation by The Wall Street Journal, based on data compiled by the Campaign for Accountability, an advocacy group that has received funding from companies that compete with Google.

The newspaper reported that Google at times compiled “wish lists” of academic studies, complete with titles and abstracts, and then searched for aca…

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Federal Judge Dismisses Suit Against Texas Campus-Carry Law

A lawsuit filed last year by three faculty members at the University of Texas at Austin that sought to reverse the state’s controversial campus-carry law has been dismissed by a federal judge, The Texas Tribune reports.

Lee Yeakel, the judge presiding over the case in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas, wrote that the professors — Jennifer Lynn Glass, a professor of sociology; Lisa L. Moore, a professor of English; and Mia Carter, an associate professor of English — di…

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18 States Sue Education Dept. Over Rollback of Borrower-Defense Rule

Updated (7/6/2017, 4:38 p.m.) with response from the Education Department.

A coalition of states is suing the education secretary, Betsy DeVos, and her department over its decision to roll back an Obama-era regulation aimed at reining in abuses by colleges that defraud students.

The lawsuit was announced by the office of Massachusetts’ attorney general, Maura Healey, which is leading the coalition of 18 states and the District of Columbia in the dispute. The complaint, filed in federal court, ar…

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Former Baylor U. Regent Referred to Female Students as ‘Perverted Little Tarts’

Updated (7/3/2017, 1:55 p.m.) with a statement from Baylor University.

A former Baylor University regent referred to women whom he suspected of drinking alcohol as “insidious and inbred,” “perverted little tarts,” and “the vilest and most despicable of girls” in an email to a Greek-organization faculty adviser, the Waco Tribune-Herald reports.

The 2009 emails from the then regent Neal (Buddy) Jones were filed as part of a Title IX lawsuit against the university alleging that Baylor used its alco…

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Supreme Court Will Review Travel Ban, but Allows It to Take Partial Effect in Meantime

The U.S. Supreme Court agreed on Monday to hear President Trump’s appeal of two cases in which lower courts overruled his travel ban, but the justices allowed parts of the ban to take effect until they issue a ruling. With arguments scheduled for the autumn, a ruling on the appeal could be a year away.

For more, see this in-depth article from The Chronicle.

In an unsigned order accompanying its decision to hear the appeal, the Supreme Court essentially said that the federal government can enforc…

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Jury Convicts 3rd Former Vanderbilt U. Athlete in 2013 Gang Rape

A Tennessee jury on Friday found a former football player at Vanderbilt University guilty of two of seven charges, including aggravated rape, in connection with the gang rape of an unconscious student in 2013, The Tennessean reports.

The former athlete, Brandon E. Banks, is the third teammate to be convicted in the case. He faces a possible 15-year prison sentence for the aggravated-rape charge. Two members of the team, Brandon Vandenburg and Cory Batey, were sentenced to 17 years and 15 years, …

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Judge Declares Another Mistrial in Fatal Shooting by U. of Cincinnati Officer

After jurors deliberated for nearly 30 hours over five days and reported that they could not reach a verdict, the judge on Friday declared a mistrial for the second time in the case of a University of Cincinnati police officer who was charged with murder after he fatally shot an unarmed black man during a traffic stop, the Associated Press reports.

The officer, Ray Tensing, shot to death Samuel DuBose, 43, in July 2015, after pulling him over for driving without a front license plate.

The univer…

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Elsevier Wins $15 Million in Copyright Suit Against Piracy Sites

A federal court has ruled in favor of one of the world’s largest science publishers in its lawsuit against websites that provide free, pirated access to millions of scholarly-journal articles, Nature.com reported on Thursday.

In a judgment handed down this week, Judge Robert W. Sweet of the U.S. District Court in New York City ruled for the company, Elsevier, in the absence of any representatives of the defendants, which include Sci-Hub, LibGen, and related sites, and awarded the publisher $15 m…

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U. of Oregon Athlete Played a Season While Under Investigation for Sexual Assault

Updated (6/23/2017, 11:14 a.m.) with a statement from the university.

A University of Oregon men’s basketball player, Kavell Bigby-Williams, played the last basketball season while he was under criminal investigation for alleged sexual assault, according to the Daily Emerald, the campus’s student newspaper.

Mr. Bigby-Williams has been under investigation by the campus police of the Northern Wyoming Community College District since September 19, the newspaper said. He is accused of sexually assau…