Dartmouth professors face sexual misconduct investigation
CONCORD, N.H. (AP) — Three Dartmouth College psychology professors are under criminal investigation for allegations of sexual misconduct, authorities said Tuesday.
The Ivy League college last week said that the professors were put on paid leave and had their access to campus restricted due to allegations of “serious misconduct.” The college later told authorities it had received allegations of sexual misconduct. Based on that information, the attorney general’s office said Tuesday it was conducting a criminal investigation along with local, county and state law enforcement agencies.
Dartmouth President Phil Hanlon told students, faculty and staff in a letter that administrators were taking the allegations seriously and were pursuing their own investigations.
“I want to say in the most emphatic way possible that sexual misconduct and harassment are unacceptable and have no place at Dartmouth,” Hanlon wrote.
The professors — Todd Heatherton, Bill Kelley and Paul Whalen — did not immediately respond to email messages seeking comment, nor did an attorney authorized to speak for Heatherton.
A college spokeswoman declined to say when authorities were notified.
“Dartmouth is cooperating with law enforcement,” Diana Lawrence said in a statement. “From the outset of our investigations, we have encouraged the reporting of possible crimes to law enforcement and have offered resources to support that reporting.”
The investigation at Dartmouth was revealed one day after fellow Ivy League member Columbia University said a history professor accused of sexually harassing a female graduate student had withdrawn from teaching, according to the woman’s attorney.
That woman filed a lawsuit earlier this month against a history professor and Columbia alleging that he repeatedly groped her and pressured her to have sex with him, and that the university ignored her complaints. A spokeswoman for the New York City university confirmed that the professor has withdrawn from teaching but remains an employee.