PrezBo Accused of Inflicting “Unbelievable Pain and Suffering” on Former Employee

Yesterday morning, Columbia President Lee Bollinger received a copy of a strangely-formatted letter in which Randy S. Raghavendra, a former employee who filed a suit against several Columbia employees in 2003 over alleged employment malpractice, accuses the university’s 19th President of “the total destruction of [Raghavendra’s] livelihood [and] professional career”; “the continuing irreparable harm and unbelievable pain and suffering being caused to him and his family during the past NINE years”; and “reckless disregard for the law.”

The letter was delivered to Manhattan’s U.S. District Court, where a judge will determine if Raghavendra’s request for motion will enter the court’s docket. According to Raghavendra, Bollinger and/or Columbia has delayed payment on a settlement the opposing parties reached in 2009, since which Raghavendra has accrued over $100,000 in credit card debt. Raghavendra also alleges that Bollinger continues to “illegally discriminate and retaliate against the [Raghavendra] by not hiring him to any of the over 100 positions he had applied for and continues to apply for since July 2009.” Read the rest of this entry »

Yale Ph.D. Arrested For Trying to Have Sex With Fake 12 Year Old, 16 Year Old and Mother

Well, it doesn’t get much worse than this. MIT researcher Yaron Segal, who received his Ph.D. at Yale last year, was arrested last Wednesday in Colorado after flying there to have sex with a mother and her two daughters, aged 12 and 16. Yes, that’s right, 12 and 16. The good news is the whole thing was a set-up by the Department of Homeland Security, who had been tracking Segal for months. The bad news is … well, he was trying to have sex with a 12 year old. That’s just awful.

Segal, currently a post-doc in MIT’s mechanical engineering department, had been in contact with what he must thought was a lovely mother and her lovely illegal daughters since early February. He first got in touch with undercover Homeland Security agent Vanessa Hipps through online chatrooms such as “childslavesex” and “ChildRapeTortureBrutality.”  Read the rest of this entry »

EXCLUSIVE: This is the Hilarious Police Report of Hazing Whistleblower Andrew Lohse’s Drunken Rampage at Dartmouth’s Homecoming Bonfire

(We’ve decided to commence IvyGate’s Hell Week a little early.)

In the morning hours of January 24, Joseph AschDartmouth’s official bloggerposted an unedited draft of an upcoming Dartmouth column in which Andrew Lohse ‘12 alleges that his former fraternity, Sigma Alpha Epsilon, “forced” him to wade through human excrement, chug vinegar, and vomit upon his classmates. A few days later, The Dartmouth extinguished much of Lohse’s argument by changing every instance of “forced” to “asked.” Yet The Dartmouth maintained Lohse’s assertion that he was “implicitly encouraged to treat Dartmouth women with about the same respect with which we treated each other in our social spaces: none.”

Shocked as we were by Lohse’s story, nothing could prepare IvyGate for what we were soon told. Within hours of Asch’s post, IvyGate received a tip that Lohse had been arrested for throwing a chair at a female security guard sometime during Dartmouth’s annual Homecoming bonfire. IvyGate’s initial reaction was, of course, disbelief: Lohse is Dartmouth’s moral authority, and routinely demonstrates the integrity of his character.

Juicy though the tip was, our consciences overruled our instincts. We didn’t publish it. Still, we wondered: did Lohse actually lob a chair at a female security guard? And then later condemn, yet claim to be above, his fraternity’s maltreatment of women? The hypocrisy was almost too difficult for IvyGate to imagine.

Nevertheless, we dutifully filed a records request with the Hanover Police Department. To our total surprise and horror, the tip turned out to be true! A day after IvyGate HQ received Lohse’s protective custody report, Lohse pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct—a step sideways from Lohse’s earlier occasions of cocaine possession and witness tampering—for the incident in question. Our scoop was ruined—or so we thought, until we read the baffling, hilarious account of Lohse’s alcohol-fueled bender at Dartmouth’s Homecoming bonfire. It is bonkers.

Not to worry, though: on Friday, Lohse informed The Daily that, contrary to logic, the fact that he was arrested for and pleaded guilty to cocaine possession and witness tampering (and now disorderly conduct) was “totally irrelevant” to his credibility. Whew! 

The full text of the police report, after the jump :

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Developing: Spanish Authorities Say Dartmouth’s Crispin Scott ’13 was Drugged and Murdered in Barcelona

According to Spanish newspaper El Periodico de Catalunya, Spanish police have arrested a Barcelona landlord for the January death of Dartmouth’s Crispin Scott ‘13. The arrestee, who is the superintendent of the building in which Scott’s body was found, was previously detained in 2009 for drugging and raping a young man. During a search of the landlord’s apartment, investigators discovered a cache of photographs depicting seemingly unconscious individuals in various states of undress:

During the arrest, agents searched his home and another apartment in Barcelona that also frequented. In both stories, according to sources close to the case, officers found two dozen photos of young people. Presumably, the detainee had photographed after letting them unconscious with that mixture of tranquilizers. In some pictures, kids dresses appeared in other, had been stripped.

The investigation began to focus on the circumstances of Scott’s death after the autopsy report indicated that Scott died with a suspiciously high level of barbiturates in his blood stream.

Scott was found dead in Barcelona on January 7, from what then appeared to be natural causes.

UPDATE: El Periodico indicates that Scott died in an apartment located in the Esplugues de Llobregat municipality of Barcelona, which is located nearly 9 kilometers west of Ronda de Sant Pere, the busy thoroughfare on which the Portland State study-abroad office is stationed, and near which, presumably, Scott’s own apartment was located.

El Periodico also quotes a source familiar with Scott’s autopsy, who told the newspaper, “Nobody, not [even someone very] hooked on drugs, [would] consume [this much] when they were partying.”

Other sources suggested to El Periodico that Barcelona police are investigating the identities of the young people photographed by the landlord, to determine whether he is a “serial rapist of young people.” The identity of the suspect remains unknown.

Harvard grad won’t get jail time for torching 9/11 memorial

Remember this guy? Brian Schoeder? The one who was so plastered that he thought torching a 9/11 memorial was a good idea.

According to DNAinfo,

Brian Schroeder, 27, entered a plea to a deal that was worked out with a Manhattan judge in early November.

Schroeder said he was so drunk he did not remember breaking into the chapel and setting mementos like photos and notes left from 9/11 family members of 9/11 victims ablaze inside the chapel at East 30th Street and FDR Drive on Oct. 31, 2009.

He did $67,000 worth of damage and was ordered to pay restitution, although the amount has not yet been determined.

Manhattan Supreme Court Judge Bonnie Wittner said Schroeder did not deserve to go to jail for his drunken mistake.

According to NPR, Charles Wolf, whose wife died at the World Trade Center, voiced similar sentiments as the judge.

Why ruin someone’s life?  He made a mistake.

However, were these arrests a series of poor decisions and slip-ups too? Every crime stems out of an initial poor decision or mistake – Ivy League, for 2011, please just agree to quickly nip in the bud our next crime headline.

Man steals $5M from Columbia before telegraphing own identity to authorities

Not all theft is equal. That’s obvious enough. Rather, it should be measured in degrees, from petty theft on up. You can even apply said standards to a collegiate setting:

Down at the bottom of the grifter totem pole are pilfering cookies and fruit from the dining hall. Totally innocuous, but you’re still likely to incur the wrath of the lumpy, uniformed cafeteria attendant with the glandular problem and a power trip if you get caught. Slightly more egregious – though still squarely in the realm of “couldn’t give a rat’s ass” – is residence hall DVD theft. A little higher, there’s the inter-fraternity thievery that never fails to amaze us for the sheer magnitude of cliché. (Historical note: At the top of this category resides Skull and Bones’ misappropriation of Geronimo’s skull, which is sort of impressive.)

Stealing money, stealing mascots, stealing dignity. Blah, blah, blah. What about when a university steals ancient artifacts from ancient peoples? All the aforementioned examples pale in unbelievable comparison to this report from the Columbia Spectator:

A Bronx man was indicted Monday after allegedly stealing nearly $5 million from the University over the last two months.

The supposed culprit is George Castro, a 45-year-old New Yorker who authorities at one point believed to be a Columbia employee. Castro had been siphoning funds through an unauthorized account that he somehow finagled Columbia’s system into recognizing as a payee, and accumulated the nearly-$5 million stake between Oct. 4 and Nov. 24. Investigators are still uncertain as to how Castro infiltrated the university’s accounts-payable system. The Wall Street Journal offers that the cyber-crook is a “tech expert.”  We have our doubts.

There’s no denying the savvy that must be involved in embezzling 5 mil from a prestigious university. That he was caught doesn’t even necessarily diminish the magnitude of the crime. (After all, Clooney got busted at the end of Ocean’s 11, yet maintained a vice-grip on his BAMF credentials.)

But Jesus Christ, can you say breadcrumbs?

First off, it didn’t take much detective work to finger Castro as the culprit – considering his actual name was on the bank account in question. You would think that someone who took the time to make off with that amount of money would at least watch a gangster movie and discern, “Hey, maybe I should look into this money laundering thing!”

Then, when the cops arrived to arrest the guy, what do they find? An $80,000 sports car parked in his driveway and 200 grand just chillin’ in a plastic bag. Well, that’s subtle. Did he at least have some sort of alibi or excuse?

According to the New York Post,

“The money just appeared in my account. I got greedy,” he told investigators.

This man is clearly a genius.

So, in a nutshell, Curious George is claiming that the money magically appeared in his bank account, willed there by a genie or unicorn or one of those little weird troll things with glitter in its belly button. Castro is currently in police custody and charged with grand larceny. His bail has been set at $2 million and his next court date is Dec. 15. And thus concludes this chapter of The Thomas Clown Affair.

Yale Postdoc Killed Outside Home

Sad news out of New Haven, where the YDN reports that 34-year-old postdoctoral Medicine fellow Vajinder Toor was shot by an individual who, Gawker writes, was a former co-worker at Brooklyn’s Kingsbrook Jewish Medical Center. This comes, for the University, in the same academic year as the senseless Annie Le killing. Toor leaves behind a wife, six months pregnant, and a three-year-old child.

Gawker Takes on “Hahvahd”-Educated Alabama Shooter

As at least one commenter and several tipsters noted over the weekend, we have thus far held back on the tragic massacre at the University of Alabama, and the subsequent detention of the Harvard-educated prime suspect, Dr. Amy Bishop.

We hadn’t fallen asleep at the wheel — we were, of course, aware that this had happened. But for this editor, at least, there was no good way to write about the subject in light of Gawker’s coverage, such as it was, of Dr. Bishop.

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Celebrity Son’s “Last Picture Show” Was the In-Flight Showing of “Love Happens”

martha_incCybill Shepherd isn’t just the star of Taxi Driver and a successful internet entrepreneurand Elvis’s ex! — she also raised a Quaker who is maybe a criminal! Penn’s Under the Button, among other sources, reports 22-year-old Cyrus “Zack” Shepherd-Oppenheim, an undeclared crypto-senior [search “Shepherd-Oppenheim” and fall into an abyss of mystery]?, was arrested at Philadelphia International Airport after a flight back to school from San Francisco.

Weirdly, Shepherd-Oppenheim — can we call you Cybill Jr.? — is alleged to have stashed contraband in the plane’s restroom, after he stole various items from sleeping passengers’ carryons. That restroom, according to the scare-quote-y Daily Pennsylvanian included “money, a digital camera, paperwork and ‘travel folders.'” Maybe the folders included Susan Finkelstein’s Phillies spring training agenda? Either way, the passengers who were not asleep noticed Shepherd-Oppenheim’s night moves, because duh, and tipped off the flight crew.

According to the Pennsylvanian, Shepherd-Oppenheim is currently awaiting a court date in Philadelphia; hopefully it won’t affect his new semester, and his eventual declaration of a major. Maybe from now on he can just steal scarves and computers from the library, like normal Ivy League students.

Officials Say Annie Le was Strangled to Death

yalenhpoliceIn the latest update into the case of Annie Le, the Yale graduate student whose body was discovered in the basement of Yale Medical School, officials have confirmed that Le was strangled to death:

According to a spokeswoman for Connecticut’s Chief Medical Examiner, Wayne Carver, Ms. Le died from ‘traumatic asphyxia,’ caused by ‘neck compression.’

This is a reversal from the statement issued yesterday by the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner, which instead of releasing the cause of Le’s death, stated

it would withhold that information indefinitely at the request of prosecutors. At the press conference, Lewis declined to comment on a report in The Hartford Courant that said Le died of asphyxiation.

This admission seems to suggest that the case is proceeding quickly, and is closer to identifying the perpetrator.