“agreed to resign in exchange for the administration dropping the investigation”
This could end up costing the University of Illinois a lot of money.
The College Fix reports:
Judge approves professor’s lawsuit against university for baseless grades-for-sex investigation
The University of Illinois argues that it can violate a contract with a professor as long as the breach itself doesn’t cause harm to the professor.
An Illinois court disagreed, denying the university’s motion to dismiss a nearly $8 million lawsuit by Joseph Petry that stemmed from its continued investigation into a student’s claims that he offered her better grades for sex.
Petry (above) agreed to resign in exchange for the administration dropping the investigation, but university lawyers tried to get out of the April 2019 contract less than a day later, he claims.
It investigated him for “nearly a full year” before admitting the student’s claims were “not credible,” but didn’t announce that it had cleared him. In contrast, the university told the media early on it was investigating Petry for “the safety and security of students and employees.”
The university’s own “admission that it continued the investigation in violation of the Agreement,” and Petry’s allegations of lost wages from the investigation, mean that his breach-of-contract lawsuit can continue, the Illinois Court of Claims ruled last month.
The two-page ruling suggests that the court saw no merit in the university’s distinction between a breach by itself and damages that resulted from that breach. It was a “half-baked argument concocted to delay the inevitable,” Petry’s lawyers said in a Jan. 27 press release that includes each party’s filings and the Jan. 19 ruling.
A university spokesperson told The College Fix it had “not admitted to any element” of Petry’s lawsuit, despite the court’s wording, and “the lawsuit is still in its earliest stages.”
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