Thursday, May 21, 2009

CU replies to Chutch motion for reinstatement

With a big "Yuck!" Peter Schmidt at the Chronicle of Higher Ed:
The University of Colorado has filed a court brief formally responding to Ward Churchill’s bid for court-ordered reinstatement to the faculty. As university officials had suggested would be the case, their stand on his reinstatement is a very emphatic no.

In the brief, filed yesterday in state court, the university’s lawyers note that the jury . . . determined that he was due only $1 in damages. The jury’s decision to award Mr. Churchill such a nominal sum “can be seen only as a complete repudiation of Professor Churchill’s scholarship and the jury’s ultimate conclusion that he destroyed his own reputation.”
Interesting, since Churchill's attorney David Lane and juror Bethany Newill have said that only one juror didn't want to give Churchill lots of money. But I also remember CU lead attorney Patrick O'Rourke on Caplis and Silverman saying just the opposite, that basically only Newill was hot to make Chutch rich(er).
The brief also seizes upon remarks by Mr. Churchill’s lawyer, David A. Lane, as reason to deny the professor’s reinstatement. In an interview with The Denver Post following the jury’s verdict, Mr. Lane said university officials would face another lawsuit by Mr. Churchill if they so much as “look at him cross-eyed” after his reinstatement. Likewise, Mr. Lane told the Colorado Daily that Mr. Churchill would sue if the university put him in a basement office or stripped him of class time.
Maybe somebody's big mouth on the other side will make a difference this time.
The brief argues that such threats place the university in an untenable position, where it faces the threat of litigation over routine academic decisions and must effectively immunize Mr. Churchill from complying with professional scholarly standards if it does not want to be sued for investigating any new complaints of misconduct brought against him.

If the court decides to award Mr. Churchill anything, the brief says, it should only be compensation for the pay he would be earning if he had kept his job. The brief argues, however, that he should not even be given that.
Update: The Daily Camera has more (via P & B)

Update II: CU's brief is devastating, particularly the appended affidavits against Churchill's reinstatement from Thomas Brown, John LaVelle, Susan Shown Harjo and a host of others, including Rhonda Lynne Kelly, sister of Churchill's former (and deceased) wife Leah Kelly. The lies, the threats, the intimidation Churchill routinely uses, all succinctly spelled out, and what they spell is: scumbag. No way he's getting his job back. (via Schapps)

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