[News] Ward Churchill appeal says judge erred
news at freedomarchives.org
Thu Jul 23 10:27:57 EDT 2009
Churchill appeal says judge erred
An accompanying affidavit states the jury wanted CU to rehire the ex-professor.
<mailto:fcardona at denverpost.com?subject=The%20Denver%20Post:%20Churchill%20appeal%20says%20judge%20erred>By
<mailto:fcardona at denverpost.com?subject=The%20Denver%20Post:%20Churchill%20appeal%20says%20judge%20erred>The
Posted: 07/23/2009 01:00:00 AM MDT
Ward Churchill continues fighting to get his job back in a new legal
motion that says a Denver District Court judge erred when he ruled
against reinstating the fired University of Colorado professor.
A juror who sat through Churchill's civil case against the university
submitted an affidavit to Chief Judge Larry Naves on Tuesday that
said the jury wanted him to reinstate Churchill.
"A majority of the jurors thought that the academic misconduct
charges were not valid," wrote juror Bethany Newill. "We felt that
the procedures afforded to Churchill by the University of Colorado,
before his termination, were biased."
Churchill was fired from the university's ethnic studies department
in 2007 for academic misconduct. His termination came two years after
a speech he wrote came to light that likened some victims of the
Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks to World War II Nazi official Adolf
The speech prompted political outrage across the country. CU
investigated whether his speech was protected under the First
Amendment and found that it was.
But while the national spotlight was on Churchill, academics came
forward and accused him of plagiarism and fraud in scholarly
writings, which led to his termination.
Churchill sued the university and was awarded $1 in damages in April
by jurors who determined that he was fired in retaliation for his speech.
Under the law, jurors could not decide the issue of reinstatement.
That was left for Naves, who presided over the trial.
On July 7, Naves decided not to give Churchill his job back and set
aside the jury's verdict. He also wrote in his opinion that CU's
Board of Regents acted as a "quasi- judicial" panel that has immunity
from the lawsuit.
Churchill's attorneys disagree with his reasoning.
"Essentially, this court has ruled that regardless of how egregious
any Constitutional violations are by the Regents of the University of
Colorado, as long as they provide a sham, kangaroo court for
individuals targeted for termination and/or prosecution because of
their political beliefs, the courts of the state of Colorado will
never interfere with any such wholesale violations of the
Constitution," the motion says.
Felisa Cardona: 303-954-1219 or
<mailto:fcardona at denverpost.com>fcardona at denverpost.com
522 Valencia Street
San Francisco, CA 94110
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