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  • Alisha Petrizzo

Former professor files lawsuit against Coastal Carolina

On Jan. 8, former English professor, Dr. Daniel Turner, opened a lawsuit against Coastal Carolina University. Apart from the university, the other defendants of the case are: Dean Daniel Ennis, Professor Kate Oestreich, and Executive Vice President J. Ralph Byington.

After being suspended back in Oct. 2016, Turner decided to sue the school on the grounds of being falsely accused of assaulting a faculty member, who happened to be one of CCU's college deans.

The information provided by the lawsuit, states that "Defendant Ennis began behaving negatively toward Plaintiff before his hire in 2010."

“Defendant Ennis first attempted to humiliate Plaintiff during the Research Presentation of his on-campus interview,” Turner claimed in the lawsuit.

According to the lawsuit, on Oct. 18, 2016, Turner approached Dean Ennis after a meeting with an open handed pat on the back to which Ennis responded with "Did you just hit me?"

Police officers showed up at Turner's on-campus office shortly after to question him on the alleged assault.

He was never asked to leave campus; however, when officers showed up at his personal home, he was given a letter stating how he was suspended without pay.

After exasperating Coastal Carolina's appeal process, Tuner was officially fired in Nov. 2017.

Breach of contract, negligence, and violation of the South Carolina Freedom of Information Act, are among some of the claims made by Turner, according to the lawsuit.

Associate Vice President, Martha Hunn, only had this to say in relation to the lawsuit:

"The University has recently been sued by a former professor over his dismissal. With respect to tenured professors, the University maintains a thorough process of checks and balances for the institution and for the protection of all of its professors. The process resulted in the termination of this professor. The lawsuit weaves a slanted representation of the events that transpired, and clearly represents only one perspective.

While a complete response cannot be provided at this time regarding this personnel matter, the University has great confidence in its processes and in the actions taken, and is prepared to present its case in court, where complete and accurate testimony of what actually happened can be provided."

The Chanticleer has reached out to Dean Ennis and Dr. Turner and both have refused to comment.

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