In June 2010, Bethune-Cookman University published a report about the university’s handling of the recent sexual harassment complaints of seven female students against four professors.
In the report, the university claims that it fired the four professors after gathering “overwhelming evidence, including statements of both students and faculty members,” of the alleged harassment.
The Daytona Beach News-Journal reported that university officials “staunchly defend the firings and claim they filed ‘to a T’ the processes set forth by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission for cases that involve sexual harassment.”
According to the American Association of University Professors, Russell Mootry, Trebor Negron, Smart Uhakheme and John Ukawuilulu are the Bethune-Cookman University professors who were accused of and fired for allegedly sexually harassing the seven students.
During the investigation conducted by the university, other faculty members claimed that:
The four professors had publicly identified themselves as the “Nigerian Mafia” (several faculty members remembered the four professors joking about this in a faculty meeting and at other public functions).
The four professors had an off-campus apartment where they took female students to have sex; one or more of the four professors would take nude photos of the female students at the apartment and threaten to release the photos on Facebook if the students revealed their improper actions to the University’s administration.
In total, seven women students, the targets of sexual harassment, revealed that various of the four professors pressured them to trade sex for grades. One of the seven women students reported receiving sexually explicit text messages and an email with depictions of sexual photographs from Professor #2. This same student also reported being accosted by him at an off-campus venue. Another reported demeaning, sexually explicit jokes told during class.
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