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Professor Calls Police When Student Refused to Move Seats

January 27, 2020
 
 

A professor at Ball State University called police on a black student who refused to move from one desk to another, CNN reported Friday.

The student, senior Sultan Benson, took an empty seat toward the back of his marketing class. When another student left shortly into class, the professor, Shaheen Borna, told Benson to move up.

Benson told CNN that he was already settled in his seat and his laptop was charging, so he declined to move. Borna threatened to call the police, and when Benson still refused to move, he completed the call.

Campus police arrived and questioned Benson. In a video of the event, several other students tell the officers that Benson was not being disruptive. Benson has since switched marketing classes, saying he would feel uncomfortable returning and has had increased anxiety since the event.

Borna has since apologized to the class and Benson, admitting that he "mishandled" the situation.

Ball State president Geoffrey Mearns also sent out an email to the student body, saying that the choice was a "gross error of judgment," and corrective action, including oversight and training for the professor, would be taken. Benson told CNN he is considering taking legal action against the professor and university.

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