John Jay Professors Under Investigation for Selling Drugs, Sexual Misconduct

September 24, 2018

Several professors at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice are under investigation for allegations of drug use and sale on campus, in addition to rape and attempting to coerce women into prostitution, The New York Times reported.

Four professors -- Anthony Marcus, Richard S. Curtis, Barry Spunt and Leonardo Dominguez -- have been placed on administrative leave. Their lawyers deny any wrongdoing, and three of them have issued statements. Most of the professors named in the two complaints have been longtime members of the college’s sociology and anthropology department and have conducted research on drug use and prostitution.

The college conducted an internal investigation prior to reporting the allegations to state authorities, which has caused some to question the authenticity of that investigation. In mid-August, campus security officers found drugs and drug paraphernalia but did not contact the police about it until this month.

In a statement to the Times, Richard Relkin, a college spokesman, defended the college’s procedure.

“The safety of the John Jay community is of utmost importance to us,” the statement read. “Throughout this ongoing investigation, we have been working under the direction of law enforcement, to ensure the appropriate authorities are aware of the situation and may take any action they deem appropriate.”

Claudia Cojocaru, a former student and current adjunct professor at John Jay, and Naomi Haber, a recent graduate, filed complaints against the professors in May. They both criticized the college's investigation.

“They were incredibly rude and victim-degrading,” Cojocaru told the Times. “They made us perform like circus animals, distorted the facts, and distorted what we talked about. They tried to brush the whole thing under the rug, so to speak. They retraumatized us by making us relive all sorts of traumatic experiences.”

Their complaints included a rape allegation by another student against one professor who was not placed on leave.

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