University Of Miami Sued Over Handling Of Colin McGinn Harassment Claims

A former University of Miami graduate student filed a federal lawsuit Thursday alleging that Colin McGinn, a philosophy professor, sexually harassed her over several months in 2011 and 2o12.

The graduate student, Monica Morrison, named as defendants the University of Miami, McGinn and his former colleague Edward Erwin, according to court filings.

She’s claiming the school violated its Title IX responsibilities by failing to fully investigate her sexual harassment claims against McGinn in 2012 and failing to stop his retaliation against her. She is also accusing McGinn of sexual harassment and civil assault, and McGinn and Erwin, another UM philosophy professor, of defamation.

Morrison filed similar claims against UM in a U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission complaint last year, which was not resolved. Her attorneys kept open the option of litigation if the EEOC complaint wasn’t successful, they said.

McGinn has always maintained he was never formally accused of sexual harassment. He resigned in 2013 just before facing faculty senate charges of not reporting a consensual relationship. Morrison claims UM erred when it accused him of that lesser charge after she made what she believed to be a formal complaint of harassment against McGinn.

“The problem is it wasn’t consensual, it wasn’t romantic in any way,” said Ann Olivarius, one of the student’s attorneys. (Olivarius herself was a plaintiff in the
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