Having trouble viewing this email? View it in your browser.

Office of Audit, Compliance & Privacy

Case in Point:
Lessons for the proactive manager

February 2020
Vol. 12 No. 02
History repeats itself. So you might wanna pay attention.

-- Quavo

We typically begin our review of the prior year's themes, findings, and trends in January's issue of Case in Point; however, we postponed that a month so we could focus on privacy issues. This month we will begin our analysis of each of the categories from 2019. We perform this assessment with a view toward identifying emerging trends and hot topics.

By overall category, we see relatively similar numbers to 2018:

  • Information Security & Technology: 8% (down 2% from 2018)
  • Fraud & Ethics: 16% (up 1% from 2018)
  • Compliance & Legal: 43% (up 3% from 2018)
  • Campus Life & Safety: 33% (down 1% from 2018)
  • Other: 1% (no change from 2018)

As a reminder for our new readers, we suggest that you scan the headlines each week, read the articles related to your area of responsibility at your institution, and then share the current events and lessons learned with others you work with. We believe this helps cultivate a strong proactive risk culture within the institution.

When we evaluated the Information Security & Technology Category for 2019, we noted that similar incidents continued to occur. The top five types of issues linked as stories during 2019 for this category were:

  1. Hack or Data Breach (generally from an external party)
  2. Accidental Exposure of Data (generally our own mistakes)
  3. Loss of a Device (more often our own lack of security)
  4. Privacy Related Issues (with a growing emphasis on the National Security impact)
  5. Denial (or loss) of IT Related Service Issues

The advice we provided last year still holds true on the most prevalent issues noted in this category:

Data Breach/Hack - You may be tempted to think this is a central/security IT topic and not one that you can control. While there are some things that IT professionals handle behind the scenes, if you connect to the institution's network, you are a potential target for those wanting to do harm. As the old adage goes, a chain is only as strong as its weakest link. Your role is to avoid being that weak link, and you can do this by practicing safe computing. AU's Information Security Group has put together a very helpful resource to help you. We encourage you to read through these suggestions for ways you can protect yourself and the institution from IT related risks.

Accidental Exposure of Data - The second most frequent problem noted is one you can definitely impact. By far, the most common incident was carelessly emailing protected data to those outside the institution (who had no need or right to the data). These cases weren't malicious or intentional, simply careless mistakes where the wrong information was sent to the wrong people. If you handle confidential data, you have a responsibility to go the extra mile in protecting this data.

Lost or Stolen Devices - Laptops, jump drives, and external hard drives with confidential data were lost at institutions coast to coast. This is another risk that you can control. The use of encryption is certainly the most important way to mitigate the risk, but common-sense security of devices like these is also important. You should ask yourself if confidential data needs to be on the devices that leave your workspace. Often there is no real need to raise the risk level by transporting data. Think about what data is on what device and make wise decisions.

The one new issue that we want to call to your attention is the fourth item, Privacy Related Issues (with a growing emphasis on National Security impact). Many of these stories revolve around foreign influence and the loss of technology to foreign nations. This topic is quickly growing in importance, and we suggest you pay particular attention to it over the coming months. We will likely speak more on this issue in a future Case in Point.

IT risks require all faculty, administrators, staff, students, and departments to be diligent and vigilant in protecting data and systems. While IT related risks are near the top in importance, there are multiple areas of risk that we must stay aware of in higher education. We invite you to review the events that occurred at institutions in the past month, and we welcome your feedback.

M. Kevin Robinson, CIA, CFE
Associate Vice President
Office of Audit, Compliance & Privacy
Follow us onTwitter

Information Security & Technology Events

Feb 19: Data Breach Lawsuit: Imagine that your most private medical information is suddenly available worldwide on the internet. That's what happened to nearly a million UW Medicine patients. The huge data breach -- one of the largest in state history -- occurred because of human error and was first reported by KIRO 7 in February of 2019. Because of the breach, private medical files were available online -- in Excel spreadsheets -- for nearly three weeks. The breach has now led to a class-action lawsuit that could eventually represent all 974,000 patients whose names and personal health information were compromised. (link)

Feb 06: FERPA Data Breach: Indiana University officials say a tool designed to help university staff access student grade point averages was unintentionally made available to the entire IU community. Spokesperson Chuck Carney says the tool was immediately disabled once the ability to access all enrolled students' GPAs was made known to IU officials. The data breach could be a violation of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, which requires consent before an educational institution can disclose personal information from educational records. (link)

Feb 04: Phishing Scam: More than 5,100 St. Louis Community College students and employees had their personal information accessed via a phishing scam. The data breach was discovered on January 13, according to a spokesperson for the college. Cybercriminals targeted employees and students through "a series of email phishing attacks" which ultimately gave them access to data stored in employee email accounts. That information included names, personal and work cellphone numbers, college email and personal email addresses, dates of birth, and addresses. Seventy-one people had their Social Security numbers compromised as well. (link)

Fraud & Ethics Related Events

Feb 27: Wire Fraud: A now-suspended researcher at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville was arrested by federal agents following the return of a grand jury's indictment. According to U.S. Attorney J. Douglas Overbey of the Eastern District of Tennessee, Anming Hu, 51, an associate professor in the Department of Mechanical, Aerospace and Biomedical Engineering at UTK, is charged with three counts of wire fraud and three counts of making false statements. The indictment alleges that beginning in 2016, Hu was part of a scheme to defraud the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) by hiding his affiliation with the Beijing University of Technology (BJUT), which is located in China. (link)

Feb 24: Theft: Crime is no respecter of persons or, it seems, chickens, as 60 chicks were stolen from their cages at one of Oklahoma State's poultry barns. The chicks were being raised for research purposes at a small barn off McElroy Street. A class in the Ferguson College of Agriculture was raising them as broiler chickens, which are chickens raised specifically for meat production. The chicks were snatched sometime after 10 p.m. Jan. 21 and were discovered missing the next morning. (link)

Feb 24: Plagiarism & Research Misconduct: Michigan State University Museum Director Mark Auslander will serve a month-long suspension after a committee found he committed plagiarism and research misconduct in work to repatriate a mummy. Auslander's four-week suspension begins Tuesday, according to an email sent to MSU Museum staff Monday from Judith Stoddart, associate provost for university collections and arts initiatives. Auslander made up facts and reported research while omitting the names of the researchers responsible in an MSU Museum Newsletter in February 2019. (link)

Feb 19: Theft: A Brigham Young University student has been arrested after he allegedly donned a black mask, sneaked through underground tunnels on campus and stole food. According to BYU Police, an employee at the university's Culinary Support Center was startled on Sunday night when he "ran into a male wearing a black mask and black clothing" after hours when the building was locked. The employee asked the man in black what he was doing there; the man in black ran away. (link)

Feb 18: Embezzlement: The 2019 audit of a former University of Toledo employee found guilty of stealing more than $22,000 while in office was released Tuesday. The audit said Jason Woodward had an account at the UT Federal Credit Union where he was the account holder, although the account was in the university's name. According to the audit, Woodward would divert money like class fees from the ECW, MBCD office rentals from minority businesses and donations into the account and would use that money for personal expenses such as credit card payments and insurance bills. (link)

Feb 17: Bribery: A manager for the Vision Clinic at the University of Georgia Health Center and two other former UGA employees have been charged in a scheme where authorities said they accepted gift cards that were unlawful for them to keep. The alleged activity came to the attention of UGA police through an anonymous tip received on the university's Alert Line System on Oct. 25, 2019. About a month later, another tip was made regarding the same situation. Warrants charge that while they were employed at UGA, they accepted gift cards on six occasions from the sale of eyeglass frames from the illegal agreement coordinated by Stowers. (link)

Feb 13: Student Loan Fraud: A former Tennessee State University (TSU) employee has pleaded guilty to student loan fraud. The Department of Justice-Middle Tennessee District announced 32-year-old Renauld Clayton fraudulently received and misappropriated $84,500 in student loan payments. Clayton admitted during 2014-2015 while he was employed at the admissions office of TSU, he used the personal information of TSU students and others to apply for student loans in their names. He then transferred the money to his personal bank account, depositing more than $60,000 for his personal use. (link)

Feb 12: Fraud Using Student Data: Two Miami-Dade men getting sentenced to federal prison after stealing identities for a $563,210 tax fraud may come off as just another tricky day in fraud-laden South Florida. What's different about Maurice Marcellus and Ludrick Joseph's scam: The identities were from students at the defunct ATI College of Health, where Marcellus worked. And, since then, Marcellus appears to have worked in the admissions office of another local college, which would give him access to the same student information. One database says Marcellus worked as a professional admissions representative at the Hialeah campus of Florida Career College as recently as 2018. (link)

Feb 05: Failure to Report Fraud: Texas Southern University officials on Wednesday ousted the president of one of the nation's largest historically black universities for failing to report fraud allegations in the admissions process and directing a former official to violate university policy. The university's board of regents deliberated for five hours before firing Austin Lane because he didn't report alleged fraud the former dean of law school admissions participated in while enrolling two students, according to the termination notice. Lane didn't report a former assistant dean who participated in alleged fraud by allowing a student to be enrolled into a program without submitting an application, the letter says. (link)

Feb 04: Tuition Bribery Scheme: A New Jersey man who took money from Delaware State University students to create phony residency documents that allowed them to get in-state tuition has been sentenced to 3 1/2 years in federal prison. Stephen Williams, 35, a Delaware State graduate from Neptune Township, was sentenced Friday in federal court in Wilmington, the U.S. Attorney's Office for Delaware said in a statement. After Williams collected the payments, he created forged residency documents, like housing leases, and then gave them to his co-defendant, associate registrar Crystal Martin, authorities said. (link)

Feb 01: Theft: Baton Rouge detectives allege Jada Jones, 18, stole personal financial information and several hundred dollars worth of electronics while employed at a college bookstore in Baton Rouge. Jones used one customer's financial aid information to buy the electronics, officers claim. She obtained the personal financial information from the customer's return receipt for a previous purchase. The electronics were purchased then given to a third person who told officers she assumed Jones bought the electronics for her legitimately. (link)

Compliance/Regulatory & Legal Events

Feb 27: Title IX: U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos announced today that the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) will require the University of Southern California (USC) to make sweeping changes to its Title IX procedures after finding that the school failed to protect students from Dr. George Tyndall, formerly employed as a gynecologist at the school's student health center, since as far back as 1989. As a result of the systemic failures at USC, the Department is requiring the school to overhaul its Title IX processes, conduct a formal review of current and former employees to determine if they responded appropriately to notice of possible sex discrimination, and allow OCR to monitor its compliance for three years. (link)

Feb 26: NCAA Violations: The Penn athletic department was placed on probation for two years and fined $5,000 Wednesday, and its men's basketball program was assessed recruiting restrictions by the NCAA in connection with recruiting violations committed by former head coach Jerome Allen. Allen, 47, a former Episcopal Academy and Penn star who coached the Quakers from 2010 to 2015, pleaded guilty and last July was sentenced to probation for accepting $300,000 in bribes from a Florida businessman to get the man's son into the university's Wharton School. (link)

Feb 26: Invasion of Privacy Misconduct: A former Rutgers University professor and surgeon has pleaded guilty to several crimes in the litany of charges filed against him alleging he installed hidden cameras and filmed women in the restroom at Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey. Out of the 160 charges the Middlesex County Prosecutor's Office levied against James Goydos of East Brunswick, only six charges resulted in guilty pleas, according to court records. (link)

Feb 25: Abuse Lawsuit: A prominent Central New York eye doctor, whose stunning accusations of sex abuse last year led to the downfall of an Olympian runner, is now suing two local institutions accused of harboring him: Syracuse University and the city school district. The coach, Conrad Mainwaring, is accused of preying on dozens of young athletes over decades and across the country, concealing his sex abuse behind a charming personality and a cloak of authority. The lawsuit doesn't actually seek money from Mainwaring. Instead, it accuses the university and school district of wrongdoing for allowing the abuse to occur. (link)

Feb 24: College Admissions Scam: Former University of Texas men's tennis coach Michael Center was sentenced to six months in prison Monday for accepting $100,000 in bribes to falsely tag an applicant as a recruit to get the student admitted. He's the first college coach to receive time behind bars in the national college admissions scandal after a former Stanford sailing coach avoided prison last summer. "This is a case, I think, that society has an interest in punishment," said U.S. District Judge Richard Stearns. Center's actions "impugn the entire integrity in ... the education system in this country." (link)

Feb 22: Sexual Misconduct: University of Michigan officials were warned more than four decades ago that one of its doctors was fondling patients during medical exams, but he continued working there despite a demotion and went on to allegedly abuse again as a physician with the school's athletic department, records obtained Friday by The Associated Press show. In 1980, the late Dr. Robert E. Anderson was pressed to step down as head of the University Health Service amid such concerns, according to a statement that his former supervisor gave to a campus detective who had started investigating the physician more than a year ago following a complaint from a former university wrestler. (link)

Feb 21: Child Pornography: Gainesville Police arrested Timothy Turner, 26, an employee of the University of Florida in the Family Nutrition Program and charged him with three felony counts of promotion of sexual performance by a child. According to the arrest report, the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children received a tip that three sexually exploitative images of children were shared by a user on Discord, a gaming chat app. The investigation into the user's IP address revealed that the account which shared the images was owned by Turner. (link)

Feb 20: NCAA Violations: Pittsburgh football and men's basketball programs have been sanctioned for NCAA rules violations related to an excessive number of individuals coaching during practice. The findings released Thursday by the NCAA reveal men's basketball coach Kevin Stallings "instructed and allowed three noncoaching staff members to perform coaching duties, resulting in the program exceeding the number of permissible coaches." (link)

Feb 20: Murder Arrest: Simpson College assistant economics professor Gowun Park emailed students on Sunday, canceling her next week of classes because of a "personal issue." Three days later, Park, 41, was formally accused of killing her husband, Sung Woo Nam, in their West Des Moines home. She faces charges of first-degree murder and first-degree kidnapping in Nam's death. Students learned about the arrests Wednesday from the campus newspaper and an email message from Simpson interim President Bob Lane. (link)

Feb 19: Discrimination Lawsuit: A Penn State student has accused the university, an administrator and two professors of treating her differently because she is African-American. Kayla Williams, a senior majoring in biobehavioral health from Allegheny County, in a suit filed Wednesday in U.S. Middle District Court also takes issue with the investigation into her claim of being raped by two male students on Jan. 15, 2017. Her racial allegations are directed at Brendan Prawdzik, an English professor, and Michelle Yarwood, a psychology professor. (link)

Feb 19: Higher Education Act Compliance: The University of Colorado Boulder is among dozens of colleges and universities across the country that did not report millions of dollars in gifts and contracts from foreign entities, according to the U.S. Department of Education. But a higher education advocacy group is questioning why the federal agency is using murky and previously unenforced regulations to "make an example" out of certain colleges and universities. The Higher Education Act requires colleges and universities receiving federal financial aid to report gifts or contracts with "any foreign source that exceed $250,000 in value and to disclose any foreign ownership or control, twice a year." (link)

Feb 19: Sexual Misconduct: The University of Michigan is investigating possible sexual misconduct by Robert Anderson, a former doctor for the school's football team. Anderson, who also was former director of the University Health Service, worked at U-M from 1968 until his retirement in 2003. He worked with the football team under former coaches Bo Schembechler and Lloyd Carr. Anderson died in 2008. The university said in a news release it was alerted to the issue when a former student athlete wrote to Athletic Director Warde Manuel to detail abuse during medical exams by Anderson in the early 1970s. (link)

Feb 18: "Deliberate Indifference" Settlement: A former University of Arkansas, Fayetteville student and the university have agreed to settle a lawsuit scheduled for trial next month that alleged "deliberate indifference" to her 2014 report of rape. Both sides on Monday filed a joint stipulation in U.S. District Court in Fayetteville that the case be dismissed with prejudice, meaning that it cannot be filed again. The former UA student will receive $100,000 in the settlement, with another $15,000 going to her attorneys to cover legal expenses. (link)

Feb 18: Sexual Abuse Class Action Settlement: A settlement agreement between the University of Southern California and a class of women allegedly sexually abused by an on-campus physician between 1989 and 2016 is fair, reasonable, and adequate, a federal court in California said. Judge Stephen V. Wilson of the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California Feb. 14 orally approved the settlement and ordered the parties to submit a proposed final approval order and judgment. The settlement will provide relief for a class of about 18,000 women who were allegedly abused by George Tyndall while being treated at the student health center, according to the proposed order submitted Feb. 14. (link)

Feb 14: Lying to Investigators: A former Michigan State University gymnastics coach was convicted on Friday of lying to investigators when she told them she did not remember if two teenagers told her that they had been sexually abused by Lawrence G. Nassar, a former team doctor for the university and U.S.A. Gymnastics, who sexually abused numerous girls and young women. A jury found the coach, Kathie Klages, guilty of two counts of lying to a peace officer. She will face a maximum prison term of four years and a fine of up to $10,000 when she is sentenced on April 15, according to prosecutors. (link)

Feb 13: Sexual Misconduct: Texas State's Board of Regents voted to fire a tenured professor, David Wiley, after allegations of sexual misconduct. The Rules and Regulations Committee recommended that Wiley's tenure be revoked and that "he be terminated for cause," according to the board's agenda. The board of regents discussed the matter for about two and a half hours in executive session, deciding unanimously to side with the decision of the committee, university president, and two tribunals to revoke Wiley's tenure and fire him. (link)

Feb 13: NCAA Violations: South Carolina became the latest men's basketball program to be accused by the NCAA of a violation as a result of the federal investigation into corruption in the sport. According to a Notice of Allegations sent to the school by NCAA Enforcement, the association is alleging a Level I violation--the most serious at its disposal--related to a bribe paid to former assistant coach Lamont Evans. The association charged the school with a single Level I violation for Evans allegedly accepting at least $5,865 in bribes in 2015-16 from agent and runner Christian Dawkins. (link)

Feb 13: Mishandled Sexual Assault Reports: Utah State University repeatedly mishandled cases of sexual assault on campus, failing to investigate when it knew about misconduct and, as a result, "rendered additional students vulnerable," the Department of Justice said Wednesday in a damning report concluding a three-year investigation into the school. The documents, which were released by USU, include heavy redactions but show that the northern Utah university has agreed to a legal settlement with the federal agency, pledging to improve its response in the future. (link)

Feb 13: Foreign Donations Disclosures: The U.S. Department of Education says it is opening an investigation of Yale and Harvard universities for failing to disclose hundreds of millions of dollars in gifts and contracts from foreign donors. The two Ivy League schools have been singled out in a federal crackdown on institutions of higher learning for allegedly not reporting foreign donations of more than $250,000, as required by law under Section 117 of the Higher Education Act. The Department of Education said Yale failed to disclosed a total of $375 million in foreign money and that it was concerned that Harvard may not have fully complied with reporting requirements. (link)

Feb 12: False Claims Act Compliance: A recent settlement with a Michigan nonprofit research institution clearly shows the Justice Department is using the False Claims Act to advance the department's China Initiative. Policing alleged foreign influence at U.S. research organizations and government contractors has been an enforcement priority since the 2018 announcement of the China Initiative. Officials at the DOJ and the FBI have expressed concern with China's Thousand Talents Program (TTP) and other research support programs that recruit foreign researchers who will bring their expertise and experience to China to add to its scientific and technical prowess. (link)

Feb 12: Sexual Misconduct Allegations: More than 20 women have now made sexual misconduct complaints against University of Michigan Provost Martin Philbert, some stretching back more than a decade, according to multiple sources with knowledge of the investigation. Not all of the allegations were unknown to the university. At least three times over the years, complaints about Philbert's behavior were made to administrators at the school, multiple sources said. (link)

Feb 12: Confederate Monument Settlement: A judge on Wednesday voided the settlement that requires UNC Chapel Hill to pay $2.5 million and give the Silent Sam Confederate monument to the Sons of Confederate Veterans. The ruling came at a hearing held to determine whether the Sons of Confederate Veterans had the legal standing to bring the lawsuit against the UNC System over the statue in the first place. Orange County Superior Court Judge Allen Baddour, who approved the settlement in November, reversed himself on Wednesday and said the group didn't have standing. (link)

Feb 11: Hazardous Chemicals Lawsuit: A former Rutgers University chemistry department employee is suing the university for knowingly exposing him to hazardous chemicals, causing him to have two major seizures and develop extreme anxiety, a federal lawsuit alleges. In court documents filed in May 2019, Jacob Moskowitz said Rutgers hired him as a scientific glassblower with no knowledge or experience in the position, then tasked him with handling chemicals that pose serious health risks. (link)

Feb 10: Child Sex Trafficking: Georgia authorities have arrested 14 Lowndes County men who are accused of communicating with children online and then traveling to meet them for sex. Among those charged is Keith Walters, dean of the College of Science & Mathematics at Valdosta State University. The Georgia Bureau of Investigation says the arrests are the result of a four-day undercover investigation planned for months and coordinated between nearly 20 agencies. (link)

Feb 10: Prostitution Arrest: The president of Jackson State University resigned Monday following his arrest during a prostitution sting in Clinton over the weekend. Clinton police arrested William Bynum Jr., 57, and charged him with procuring the services of a prostitute, false statement of identity and possession of marijuana. He was among 17 people arrested, according to Clinton police. Also arrested was Shonda McCarthy, director of JSU Art Galleries. (link)

Feb 04: NCAA Violation Allegation: Michigan State coach Mark Dantonio is being accused of possibly committing NCAA violations, according to new court documents. A motion filed late Monday night in a lawsuit brought by former program staffer Curtis Blackwell alleges Dantonio had Blackwell accompany him on an in-home recruiting visit, in violation of NCAA rules. Blackwell, Michigan State's former recruiting director, is suing Dantonio, former athletic director Mark Hollis, former president Lou Anna Simon and two university police detectives for wrongful termination and unlawful arrest. (link)

Feb 03: Wrongful Death Lawsuit: The mother of a Rutgers University student who was struck and killed by an Amtrak train after becoming intoxicated at a fraternity party has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the university, its police department and the fraternity. Claudia Patterson, mother of Kenneth Patterson, a freshman who attended a Christmas party at Theta Delta Chi on Dec. 9, 2017, before he was killed by the train, filed the suit Dec. 6 in Middlesex County Superior Court. (link)

Feb 03: Manufacturing Meth: Charges have officially been filed against former chemistry professors David Bateman, 45, and Dr. Bradley Rowland, 40, for manufacturing meth, possession, including advanced penalties for manufacturing meth in a Drug Free Zone (on or within 1,000 feet of a public college or university). According to court documents, in December of 2019, the Clark County Sheriff's Office received information from HSU's legal team of the two professors acting in a way "that lead such faculty members to believe that these persons were involved in some type of illegal activity." (link)

Feb 02: Chinese Spying: It was a brazen scheme to steal another company's product, according to a federal criminal complaint. University of Texas professor Bo Mao, prosecutors say, took proprietary technology from an American Silicon Valley start-up and handed it over to a subsidiary of Huawei, the Chinese telecommunications conglomerate. But what makes the case against Mao particularly noteworthy is how he was accused of carrying out the theft: By using his status as a university researcher to obtain the circuit board under the guise of academic testing. (link)

Feb 02: Child Pornography: Idaho's former budget director pleaded guilty Thursday to child pornography charges and now has a sentencing hearing scheduled for April. Prosecutors initially filed three charges of possession of sexually exploitative material against Marty Peterson in October, a day after a police investigation by the Idaho Internet Crimes Against Children Unit led to his arrest. (link)

Feb 01: NCAA Violations: The University of Kansas has received an amended notice of allegations from the NCAA adding a Level III violation from the 2019 football season. An original notice of allegations was sent to KU last September, detailing five Level I men's basketball and two Level II football violations. In a memo dated Jan. 27 -- though watermarked with Jan. 30 -- the NCAA enforcement staff added an eighth violation to KU's notice after "the institution and enforcement staff discovered a new Level III violation involving the football program and its current staff." (link)

Feb 01: Due Process Lawsuit Settlement: The University of Michigan and a professor have settled a lawsuit over due process and the opportunity to cross-examine accusers in a sexual harassment case. According to the settlement agreement, UM agreed to pay $95,000 to Nacht Law for costs and attorney fees on behalf of Pamela Smock. She will also get a 1.5% merit pay increase paid to faculty in the sociology department in 2019, raising her salary to $149,515. Smock sued UM in February 2018, alleging she was targeted with unfair sanctions -- including a three-year pay freeze and the denial of sabbatical leave -- in response to a series of investigations and reviews into claims from students that Smock behaved inappropriately. (link)

Campus Life & Safety Events

Feb 28: Sexual Assault: A man was charged Thursday with sexually assaulting a graduate student in N.C. State University student housing. Roberto Alvarez Jr., 37, was arrested at his home in Cary and charged with sexual battery, breaking or entering and assault on an individual with a disability, according to a Cary Police Department arrest report. Alvarez is accused of unlawfully entering Hudson Hall in N.C. State's Wolf Village apartments at 2760 Wolf Village Way on Tuesday, arrest warrants state. (link)

Feb 26: Coronavirus: American university programs in Italy -- the second-most-popular destination for study abroad programs -- are variously suspending operations and evacuating students, moving classes online, or warning students not to travel domestically as the global spread of the new coronavirus begins to affect international programs in countries outside China, where the virus first originated. (link)

Feb 25: Hazing: There was painful testimony Tuesday from the victim of a hazing incident at Miami University. It came during a hearing for many of those who were involved. Tuesday morning in Butler County Area 1 Court, Judge Robert Lyons addressed one of the accused: "What is your plea on the charge of hazing, one count?" he asked. Former student Scott Sidner answered, "Guilty." One by one, they admitted to hazing Tyler Perino while he was a pledge at the Miami University's Delta Tau Delta fraternity. (link)

Feb 24: Armed Robbery: Authorities are investigating the report of an armed robbery that took place over the weekend on the campus of Mary Baldwin University in Staunton. The Staunton Police Department said a man armed with a handgun made his way into a room at Woodson Residence Hall on Saturday around 4:30 p.m. A 19-year-old woman was inside the room at the time, police said. The suspect fled the room with a safe that held an undisclosed amount of cash. (link)

Feb 22: Arson: A student at Northern Illinois University is facing aggravated arson charges after police say he intentionally set a fire in his room inside Stevenson Hall to cover up the smell of burnt marijuana. Paul L. Collins, 21, of the 200 block of Troy Court, Romeoville is charged with aggravated arson, resisting a police officer, unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia and tampering with a fire safety system. (link)

Feb 20: Hazing: The University of Pittsburgh says it has placed a sorority under interim suspension and is investigating allegations of hazing by the organization. Pitt officials identified the sorority Friday as Delta Zeta. "The university has received reports that the Delta Zeta sorority may have been involved in new member hazing and conduct that violates the Student Code of Conduct as well as the Fraternity and Sorority Guidelines," Pitt said in a statement provided Friday by spokesman Kevin Zwick. (link)

Feb 19: Student Arrest: A Lamar University student is facing several charges after a video appearing to show him getting arrested inside the school's rec center went viral on Tuesday. The man can be heard in the video shouting at two officers as he's being restrained. Lamar University spokesperson Shelly Vitanza said in a statement that he "had a prior incident of misconduct at the Center, was asked to meet with the Center's director before he could enter. Instead, the student bypassed security and staff." He was arrested and charged with resisting arrest, trespassing, attempted assault of a peace officer according to the statement. (link)

Feb 19: Student Protests: Suspensions for a group of Syracuse University students protesting racial injustice on campus have been lifted, according to a university spokesperson. The protests started again Monday evening at Crouse-Hinds Hall and included members of the #NotAgainSU movement. This movement was formed after a series of racial incidents and racist graffiti was found on the campus last fall. The interim suspensions were issued after students refused to leave a sit-in protest at Crouse-Hinds Hall on Monday. (link)

Feb 16: Mumps Cases: At least four students at the University of New Hampshire in Durham have confirmed cases of mumps, according to state health officials. Two other students may also be infected, despite all six people being previously fully vaccinated against the virus. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, mumps is a contagious viral infection that can cause fever, muscle pain, headaches, fatigue, and loss of appetite. Mumps can pass from one person to another through saliva exchange and close personal contact. (link)

Feb 13: Racial Issues: A video clip is circulating on Twitter concerning the Multicultural Student Center at the University of Virginia. The original version of the video was reportedly posted by a friend of the unidentified woman who speaks in it, but that post has since been deleted. It was reposted by the Young America's Foundation, and the woman makes a "public service announcement" regarding the number of white people using the facility. (link)

Feb 12: Rape & Kidnapping: Two Ohio State University football players were arrested and charged in connection with the rape of a woman in the Columbus area, court documents show. Amir Riep, 22, and Jahsen L. Wint, 22, were charged with rape and kidnapping in connection with the alleged incident that happened on Tuesday, Feb. 4, 2020. According to court records, Riep was having "consensual sex" with the alleged victim when she decided "she did not want to continue." (link)

Feb 11: Fraternity Suspension: The Penn State Office of Student Conduct has placed the Phi Rho chapter of Delta Kappa Epsilon on interim suspension while it investigates multiple allegations of serious misconduct made against the fraternity. The investigation is into an alleged unregistered social event held on Jan. 30 that potentially endangered students as well as other serious accusations related to the alleged event. (link)

Feb 11: Exploitation: A former convict from New Jersey has been charged with targeting his daughter's friends at Sarah Lawrence College for indoctrination and exploitation, engaging in sex-trafficking, extortion and forced labor, according to an indictment released on Tuesday. Shortly after the man, Lawrence V. Ray, left prison about a decade ago, he moved into his daughter's dormitory at the elite college in Yonkers, N.Y., and began manipulating her friends and others, the indictment said. Over the course of nearly a decade, Mr. Ray "subjected his victims to sexual and psychological manipulation and physical abuse." (link)

Feb 10: Arson: A former student accused of starting a fire in a dorm at a northern New Jersey university last year has pleaded guilty to criminal mischief. Thomas Apostolico, 18, of Toms River, entered his plea Thursday and agreed to pay $7,665.50 in restitution for damages the blaze caused at Stevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken. Investigators determined that Apostolico, a freshman at the university, had set fire to a dryer sheet and threw it into the garbage can where he had previously discarded fireworks, sparking the blaze. (link)

Feb 05: Racial Comments: University of Wisconsin officials are investigating an allegation that a racial epithet was directed at Kobe King by a UW staffer. The Journal Sentinel on Wednesday informed senior associate athletic director Justin Doherty, who oversees the men's basketball program, it had learned of the allegations. King, a redshirt sophomore from La Crosse Central High School, announced recently he was leaving the program and planned to transfer. (link)

Feb 04: Fraternity Suspension: Texas State's Pi Kappa Phi chapter faces a seven-year suspension from the university following an alleged assault perpetrated by members of the fraternity. The national chapter has since submitted an appeal to the university's decision. An official statement from the university, provided by Media Relations Manager Jayme Blaschke, reads, "The administrative review of Pi Kappa Phi has been completed. The fraternity has been suspended for a minimum of seven years beginning Jan. 27, 2020." (link)

Feb 03: Campus Shooting: Two women were found dead and a baby was taken to the hospital after a shooting on Monday at Texas A&M-Commerce, according to university officials. At 10:17 a.m. on Monday morning, a student called university police from the Pride Rock Residence Hall, a three story co-ed dorm for freshmen students. When officers arrived they found the two women and an injured 2-year-old boy. The child is in stable condition at a local hospital, said Bryan Vaughn, Chief of the Texas A&M-Commerce Police, in a statement. (link)

Feb 01: SGA Election Interference: A controversy over two East Carolina University trustees trying to influence a student election widened Thursday with the release of public documents. It says trustees Phil Lewis and Robbie Moore reached out to an unnamed student, first through Facebook messenger on January 12th, to get them to run for SGA president. That SGA position is a voting member of the ECU Board of Trustees. The BOT leadership claim that Lewis and Moore "intended that the student, if elected, would join them and other Trustees in what they described as a "seven" member majority vote for the purpose of advancing their objectives". One of those was to elect a new chair for the board. (link)

Feb 01: Rape & Kidnapping: A University of Utah football player was charged Friday after police say he locked a 17-year-old girl in his apartment and raped her. Terrell Perriman, a 20-year-old wide receiver for the U., faces a first-degree felony count of rape and a third-degree felony count of aggravated kidnapping. He was arrested Thursday morning and booked into the Salt Lake County jail, where he is being held on $750,000 bail. (link)

If you have any suggestions, questions or feedback, please e-mail me at robinmk@auburn.edu. We hope you find this information useful and would appreciate hearing your thoughts. Feel free to forward this email to your direct reports, colleagues, employees or others who might find it of value. Back issues of this newsletter are available on our web site.

If you have any suggestions for items to include in future newsletters, please e-mail Robert Gottesman at gotterw@auburn.edu.

Back to top

© Redistribution of this newsletter, with or without modification, is permitted provided Auburn University Office of Audit, Compliance & Privacy is listed as the source.