The Maneater

Melissa Click reaches deal with city prosecutor

Click is still suspended by the Board of Curators for Concerned Student 1950 campsite incident.

Assistant communications professor Melissa Click will avoid prosecution and serve 20 hours of community service in exchange for pledging to avoid further violations of the law, according to a City of Columbia news release.

"Based on the facts of this case, I believe this disposition to be appropriate," City Prosecutor Stephen Richey said in the release. "This disposition is in keeping with my office's handling of dozens of similar municipal cases and adequately serves the interest of justice by ensuring the defendant will not engage in similar conduct."

Richey’s decision comes four days after he charged Click with third-degree assault for her actions Nov. 9 at Carnahan Quad. In a video taken and posted online by junior Mark Schierbecker, she called for “muscle” to remove him from the site.

Interim Chancellor Hank Foley told reporters Monday that Click’s job was safe. However, the UM System Board of Curators suspended Click on Wednesday pending further investigation. UM System spokesman John Fougere could not be reached Friday for comment on if Click’s deal will impact the investigation.

The Executive Committee of Faculty Council said in a statement released Thursday that suspending and investigating Click without following the bylaws that the Board of Curators previously approved “undermines confidence in the current leadership of the university.”

According to the statement, the university’s Faculty Bylaws state that a person or multiple people may file “charges alleging breaches of professional ethics or commission of irresponsible acts” against MU’s faculty.

The stated provisions are designed to “protect the rights of accused faculty and protect the university’s interest in identifying and responding to faculty irresponsibility,” the statement read.

The statement addresses reasons that faculty have not brought charges upon Click.

According to the statement, Click received death and rape threats by way of phone and email in addition to “admonishment” by Provost Garnett Stokes. Some faculty who had considered bringing charges against Click chose not to because Click issued an apology.

“Some faculty concluded that no additional university proceedings were necessary, believing that the reprimand and the public opprobrium which professor Click has suffered constituted more than sufficient punishment,” the statement reads. “It appears that public confidence in the university, its administration, and its faculty would have been bolstered had a charge been filed against professor Click during the fall.”

In a separate statement sent out Thursday, Concerned Student 1950 in support of Click.

“White supremacy is on the hunt for social degradation once again,” Concerned Student 1950’s statement read. “It is unfortunate that Melissa Click has become the victim of social and political violence. Click is a white woman, professor, and ally who supported historically marginalized students at the University of Missouri during a time when students were exposing the institution for preserving racism.”

In the statement, Concerned Student 1950 accused the UM System of dedicating time to “tarnishing Click’s career instead of dismantling the oppressive RACIST social system it perpetuates.”

Edited by Katherine Knott | kknott@themaneater.com

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