[Updated (1/25/2016, 6:03 p.m.) with response from the Missouri campus’s interim chancellor.]
Melissa Click, the University of Missouri at Columbia professor who drew condemnation for confronting student journalists during a campus protest last fall, has been charged with misdemeanor assault for her role in the fracas, the Columbia Missourian reports.
During a November demonstration led by members of Concerned Student 1950 — the student group whose protests of the campus racial climate had just led to the resignation of Timothy M. Wolfe, the university system’s president — Ms. Click attempted to order two reporters away from the scene. At one point she asked for “muscle” to remove one of the journalists, Mark Schierbecker.
A video capturing the confrontation was widely distributed online. Ms. Click, an assistant professor of mass media who also held what the university described as a “courtesy” appointment in the journalism school, faced a backlash from both fellow professors and outside viewers, and she soon apologized for her actions.
A complaint filed by Mr. Schierbecker said that “by grabbing his camera with her hand and attempting to knock it from his grasp,” Ms. Click had made him “fear he was in danger of immediate physical injury.” The charge could carry a punishment of up to 15 days in jail and a small fine.
Later on Monday, the Columbia campus’s interim chancellor, Henry C. (Hank) Foley, rejected demands that Ms. Click be fired immediately. According to the Associated Press, he said that the university would not act peremptorily in the case of Ms. Click, who is up for tenure, but would instead let the legal process take its course.