YPSILANTI (WXYZ) — An Eastern Michigan University student claims her former instructor emailed her an unsolicited photo after she asked for a recommendation for law school.
Destinee Hayes, a graduate student, said she received the lewd emails and photo of her former teacher's genitals from his university-issued email address in August.
"I was disgusted and taken aback," Hayes told 7 Action News. "This was not something that I expected from this professor."
Hayes also claims she reported the emails to a Title IX coordinator but the school did not take action.
An @EasternMichU graduate says her former instructor sent her a pic of his private parts after she asked for a recommendation.— Rudy Harper (@RudyHarperWXYZ) December 10, 2020
We have copies of the lewd emails and the university’s response.
Our report:@tv20detroit at 10@wxyzdetroit at 11 pic.twitter.com/LIhTbrNS1l
Eastern Michigan University responded to Action News in a statement that reads, "We have not yet received the lawsuit, so are unable to discuss it specifically or review any claims it may state. However, these are very serious allegations. There is no place on Eastern Michigan University's campus for any conduct of this nature."
Ms. Hayes graduated in April 2020, and this incident is alleged to have occurred in August 2020, when she was no longer a student. Eastern Michigan’s Title IX Office met with her on Sept. 1, 2020 regarding this matter. At that time, the Title IX coordinator discussed with her the university’s grievance process and initiated an inquiry into these allegations. That inquiry is ongoing at this time.
The instructor in question is a full-time lecturer who has been on leave from the university for the fall semester and has had no access to students during the fall semester.
The university said it will continue to investigate the matter and take swift and appropriate action as needed.
Hayes' attorneys said they have filed a notice of claims and will also file a lawsuit for negligence, sexism and racial discrimination. Hayes said the teacher is a white man in his 60s who has a long tenure with the university.
"I'm not only doing this for myself," Hayed said. "I'm doing this for other women who have been victimized by someone in a higher position."
She plans to meet with local authorities to report the inappropriate photo.
National Sexual Assault Hotline: Confidential 24/7 Support: 1-800-656-4673