(CNSNews.com) – The Life Legal Defense Foundation (LLDF) filed a civil suit Thursday against the University of California and Professor Mireille Miller-Young seeking “compensation for physical battery, property theft and civil rights violations” following an on-campus altercation in March with pro-life demonstrators.
Miller-Young, an assistant professor in the Feminist Studies Department at the university’s Santa Barbara campus (USCB), was convicted in July of stealing a pro-life sign from the group of demonstrators in a specially designated free speech area on campus and assaulting a teenaged member of the group.
“This is a mature, supposedly educated woman charged by the University of California to convey knowledge, and instead she conveyed discrimination and intolerance. Not only was she out of line in attacking students, but she literally drew blood from a minor,” said Dana Cody, LLDF’s president and executive eirector.
The altercation leading to the lawsuit arose when Miller-Young grabbed a sign from a group of pro-life activists led by 21-year-old Joan Short. She later claimed that she was “triggered” by the images of aborted babies.
Miller-Young then pushed and scratched Joan’s 16-year-old sister, Thrin Short, who caught the incident on video. Miller-Young got away with the sign and later destroyed it in her office.
After the Shorts filed a complaint, the professor told police that she felt she had “a moral right” to steal the sign and that she believed “she set a good example for her students” by encouraging them to help her.
Miller-Young entered a plea of "not guilty" to misdemeanor theft, battery and vandalism charges on April 4th before changing her plea to "no contest" in July. She was sentenced to three years of probation, 108 hours of community service, and 10 hours of anger management classes.
“Miller-Young has not apologized for her physical attack on Thrin Short, nor has the university condemned the criminal actions of its employee, who remains listed in the faculty directory,” LLDF pointed out following the sentencing.
The civil complaint states that instead of an apology, university officials ridiculed Miller-Young’s pro-life victims.
“On March 21, 2014, Michael Young, Vice-Chancellor of UCSB, sent an e-mail to students and faculty warning that the campus was being visited by ‘the most recent generation of true believers, self-proclaimed prophets, and provocateurs,’ including ‘anti-abortion crusaders'," the lawsuit states.
George Foulsham, UCSB's director of news and media relations, told CNSNews.com that UCSB was “unaware of the filing of such an action.” CNSNews.com sent him a copy of the lawsuit, but he did not reply to repeated requests for further comment.
Professor Miller-Young also did not respond to CNSNews.com’s requests for comment.