Signpost (Weber, Utah), 1980-05-091
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KUTV's Amezcua denies libelling Van Dyke KUTV investigative reporter Carlos Amezcua said Tuesday he chose to investigate the sexual harassment allegations against the WSC financial aids office because he felt college and HEW officials were not giving adequate importance to the charges. Amezcua, whose station faces a $1.5 million libel suit because of their coverage of the sexual harassment charges, spoke at a small convocation sponsored by WSC Chicano students. He called the series of events leading to the dismissal of WSC financial aids director William VanDyke "very emotional," and events that "struck deep into Ogden." The early February television news series on the case featured several women who claimed that VanDyke sexually harassed them while they applied for financial aid. VanDyke has denied all charges and his libel suit will attempt to prove they are false, according to Richard Richards, VanDyke's legal counsel. Richards says his suit must prove first that the charges are not true, and second, that KUTV Channel 2 acted with 'reckless disregard for the truth' and held VanDyke up to ridicule before his peers. Amezcua admitted that VanDyke was held up to ridicule, but said there was no reckless disregard for the truth. "We checked our sources very carefully," Amezcua said, and added that he tried many times to obtain statements from VanDyke about the accuracy of the Results of a federal investigation of Weber State College on race discrimination allegations are complete and will be released either today or Monday from the HEW Civil Rights regional office in Denver. The charges of racial discrimination in areas of counseling financial aids, and grading were investigated by a team of inspectators in March after being originally filed in a class-action complaint by the local Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) in late November. charges. Asked if he would do anything differently if he had to do it again, Amezcua responded, "I would work more closely with the WSC administration." WSC officials advised VanDyke to not say anything to the press until the investigation of the allegations by HEW was completed. Depositions in the libel suit begin this week and the results of the HEW investigation are due by Monday. Amezcua also stated he did not trust CORE (Congress of Racial Equality) official Shirley Thomas, who filed the race discrimination suit, because he thought she might "have an axe to grind against the college." Thomas has since been implicated in several legal actions. MUL . WEBER STATE COLLEGE O . f . o l I I Jr J n OGDEN UTAH J Inside Today News Briefs page 2 B.A. waiver page 3 Letters to the Editor page 4 Cortez Awards page 5 Sports page 7 Volume 40 Issue 52 May 9, 1980 Iranian clash draws search for suspects By Robert Whetten An outburst of fighting between American and Iranian students in the Union Building Tuesday morning has led to a search, for American suspects involved in the incident. The incident was the second in three weeks on the WSC campus. Campus and city police have tightened security in the Union Building area during midday to prevent further disruptions. Campus police announced Wednesday they will closely monitor the 'Deport Iranian Students' demonstration scheduled for today at noon. The fighting apparently broke out when an exchange of abusive language between an Iranian and several Americans prompted the Iranian to request the aid of several friends. According to an eyewitness report, a few more words were exchanged between the two groups before the fight broke out and "white guys seemed to come from everywhere to help the white guys." WSC campus police were called to the site just before 10 a.m., but by the time they arrived everyone involved had left except one Iranian. Sepehyi Amin Ahmad was booked for disorderly conduct (disturbing the peace) and was released when he asserted that he acted only in self-defense. Three Iranians were treated for mouth cuts and bruises at the Student Health Center and one was taken to McKay-Dee Hospital for further treatment. Ahmad told police officers he was asked by five Americans if he was Iranian. When he told them he was. !ia was hit in the nose and kuked by others, according to Ahmad. He said he knew of no other fights and thought his was an isolatedincident. Informant reports confirming Ahmad's story and Ahmad's willingness to press charges have led to a search for suspects by the campus police. "We have one suspect and are currently attempting to identify three others," WSC police chief Lee Cassity reported. Cassity said the suspect indicated the fight was caused by both Americans and Iranians, not just by Americans. One suspect reportedly bragged to others in the Union Building that "there were three of us and three of them, and when we left there were three Iranians on the ground." But police reports indicate there were at least twice as many Americans as Iranians involved. Associate Dean of Student Affairs Darnell Haney has been placed in charge of dealing with those involved in the case. "We will find out who is causing these incidents," Haney said, and promised that those involved will be regarded merely as students, not as Americans and foreigners. Reports that dorm athletes had precipated the fighting prompted WSC Athletic Director Gary Crompton to check with his coaches about the incident. Crompton warned, however, against the mistake of blaming athletes as a group for the incident. "They are often blamed unfairly for this type of thing." Foreign Students Advisor Tony Spanos says he believes the disturbances are a result of "frustrations on the part of Americans" and lack of cultural understanding. Campus officials expressed concern that today's rally would increase tensions between American and Iranian students, but rally organizer Edward F. Devlin II promised that the demonstration would be peaceful. Group io be armed ? 'Deport Iranian Students' rally set for noon today A 'Deport Iranian Students' demonstration is scheduled for noon today, despite warnings from WSC officials that it may lead to more American-Iranian disruptions on campus. Rally organizer Edward F. Devlin II says he hopes to have 2,000 people on the lawn between the Union Building and Promontory Towers dormitory to show support for the immediate deportation of Iranian students. A Svhite supremacy' group contacted the Associated Press late yesterday and said that they will arm themselves at the rally in order to protect Devlin. But college officials, worried by recent anti-Iranian violence and anonymous phone calls, say they attempted to dissuade rDeviin from holding the demonstration. They feared it would only cause more trouble. Dean of Students Kay Evans said the college does not have the right to give or deny approval for the demonstration. She said her role was limited to pointing out to him what he must do to conform to the Students Rights and Responsibilities by laws and to ask him to be careful. Devlin told campus police Wednesday he had received threats on his life from an anonymous caller the previous night. Devlin said the caller told him that there is a group of 20, and said "we're going to kill you," and then made sexual threats. "I know who the caller is," Devlin said, indicating it is an Iranian. Iranian students, when told of Devlin's supposed call, denied responsibility for it, and accused him of trying by build up publicity for the demonstration. Devlin promised the rally will be peaceful and said troublemakers would be kept out. Campus and city police have said they will monitor the event closely. Devlin admitted he has no way of ensuring the rally will be peaceful and he has no means of keeping troublemakers away, even if they could be identified. Assistant to the President Dean Hurst warned that any student, regardless of affiliation, will be dealt with according to the Student code and could be expelled for disrupting the college. Devlin first attracted attention as 'the Kool-Aid Kid' for passing out handbills last week inviting Iranians to a 'Jim Jones Kool-Aid Party.' He emphasized that was only a joke and he didn't expect anyone to take him seriously on the Kool-Aid offers. Devlin also said he knows nothing of the fighting between-Americans and Iranians in the Union Building breezeway Tuesday. In related action, campus police reported an anonymous, phone call Wednesday to the Highway Patrol threatening that any Iranians seen would be "shot through the head." i ) i j i v f s L3- -X '.J i -n) y.i 4 y i OL-AID-KID Edw.id F. DevUn II has organized a 'Deport Iranian Students' rally to be held today. Delvin promises a peaceful demonstration. Photo by Dave Barrett.
|Title||Signpost (Weber, Utah), 1980-05-09, Vol. 40, No. 52|
|Creator||Weber State College|
|Contributors||Associated Students of Weber College; A generous grant from the Utah State Library and the Institute of Museum and Library Services.|
|Description||Weber's current student newspaper, the Signpost, first appeared on September 29, 1937. For two years prior to that time, campus news was disseminated via announcements posted on a bulletin board known as the "Signpost". As a result, the masthead of the first issue of the paper itself featured a rudimentary wooden sign with the title spelled out in rustic-looking letters. Over the years the paper has been published continuously, though the look, size and style has changed several times.|
|Subject||College student newspapers and periodicals; Weber State College|
|Publisher Digital||Stewart Library, Weber State University|
|Source||University Archives LD5893.W55 S5, Stewart Library, Weber State University|
|Rights Management||Public Domain. Courtesy of University Archives, Stewart Library, Weber State University.|