SWBTS responds to sexual abuse lawsuit

SWBTS President "Greenway responded to a personal injury lawsuit that alleges "Jane Roe" was forcibly raped at gunpoint on at least three occasions from October 2014 through April 2015 by a fellow student with an extensive criminal history who also was employed as an SWBTS plumber." - BPNews

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Jay's picture

This is an older thread that most people have moved off of, but Rachael Denhollander linked to this story in the Atlantic the other day and I think it's well worth noting and asking others to read.  It's a long story of how the criminal justice system generally fails rape or assault victims and gets into the psychology behind victims, the police, and those charged with investigating the medical kits and how criminals usually get away with it.  I also wanted to call out this section in particular, because there are parallels with how we handle 'sexual sin':

In some cases, police didn’t believe that sex had occurred at all. Consider this report by a Detroit detective, after a 14-year-old girl claimed she was abducted by two men and raped inside a burned-out house. “This heffer is trippin,” the detective wrote. “She was clean and smellin good, ain’t no way that ---- happened like she said … The jig was up. She didn’t want to talk no mo. So her mama took her to the hospital, but they got the ---- outta here.” That investigation warranted two pages, which ended: “This case is closed: UTEEC.” Unable to establish the elements of the crime.

To police officers who haven’t been trained to spot signs of trauma, many rape victims appear to be lying. Why was she laughing when she gave her statement? Why was she so flat and unemotional? One Detroit detective told Campbell that a victim should be “a complete hot mess. They should be crying. They should be very, very traumatized.” But research finds that many victims don’t respond in a predictable fashion. This goes for their behavior during the assault as well as after: Why didn’t she fight? Why didn’t she run? Liz Garcia used to tell people that she would fight like crazy if a stranger ever came into her house. “I don’t say that anymore. I could have had all the weapons in the world in my house. But I couldn’t grab a weapon. He was taller, bigger; there was no fighting him.” One survivor told me she offered her assailant a glass of iced tea, hoping her courtesy would dissuade him. Another tried to politely decline the assault: You don’t have to do that. It’s fine. Yet another pretended she was enjoying herself, hoping he wouldn’t kill her afterward.

Michael Sauro, who headed Minneapolis’s sex-crimes unit and oversaw Amber Mansfield’s case, says the unit thoroughly investigates “99 percent of the time.” (Jessica Dimmock)

If detectives blame or disbelieve a woman, their next step is to close the case by persuading her to withdraw the complaint. In Detroit, Campbell says, detectives sometimes opened interviews by noting that the victim would be charged for false reporting if she said anything that was untrue or couldn’t be corroborated. Worried about being prosecuted, the woman would withdraw the allegation, and the officer would walk her to the door. One survivor told Campbell that the entire process seemed aimed at “culling the herd.”

But even when the victim does everything right, even when the police build a strong case against a suspect—even then, a prosecutor might decline to bring the case to trial. Prosecutors, particularly elected ones, are measured by their wins and losses and may be unwilling to spoil their record with problematic cases. “They only allow certain victims to go to trial, where they feel they have really rock-solid evidence,” Campbell says. “They’ve got to have the perfect victim, the perfect crime, the perfect witness—and anybody who deviates from that is not going to have their day in court.” Maybe the woman has a checkered past. Maybe she had too much to drink that night. Maybe she knew the suspect, triggering the nearly bulletproof defense of consent.

Sometimes, even a confession is not enough...

 

"Our task today is to tell people — who no longer know what sin is...no longer see themselves as sinners, and no longer have room for these categories — that Christ died for sins of which they do not think they’re guilty." - David Wells

Bert Perry's picture

Perhaps it would be good to explain why colleges are, per Title IX, required to investigate these things at all.  In a nutshell, it is because allowing a sexual free-for-all on campus tends to tell women they might as well not bother coming.  Hence, for both criminal and non-criminal (many sexual harassment cases) cases, colleges that receive federal money are required to comply.  

It is, really, simply the federal government insisting that colleges apply misconduct policies equally to both men and women.  And in that light, it's worth noting that even without Title IX, a college is going to want to take steps to make sure that criminals do not victimize students.  That's why college application forms generally have the question "have you ever been charged or convicted of a crime?"  It's also why colleges will suspend or expel students whose behavior, while not criminal, shows extraordinarily bad judgment.  

In this case, it wasn't just inadequate supervision, Mark, and if you'd (AHEM) read the complaint, you would know this.  Let's not misrepresent things; Patterson and SWBTS did not just fail to supervise the guy.  He admitted a criminal and gave him a job that gave him the key to the womens' dorms with a ready-made excuse to be there at any hour of the day or night.  Then, when predictable results followed, he appears to have "guided" the "investigation" in a way that the police (despite their connection to SWBTS) recommended against, tried to "break her down", coming to a meeting to which he was not invited and then diverting its topic to the rapes.  Then when he was called on it, he released (illegally) documents mixed with false claims to his friends, who leaked them to the public.

This is all documented, Mark.  These documents--the Sharayah Colter blog, statements by Patterson's lawyer, etc..--all exist.  They are backed up by multiple named witnesses to the events in question.   There are police reports which (ahem) make very clear why she didn't proceed with sexual assault charges.  

Really, I'm troubled by the apparent fact that either you have never read the complaint, or you're dismissing it out of hand.  Read the complaint carefully, Mark.  Your response displays the same attitude that Patterson did; when a report is made, make sure you disbelieve it, and don't trouble your mind with a close look at the evidence.  Definitely don't expend any energy to make sure a complainant is safe while the investigation is done.

Somewhat related thought; maybe it's time for universities to work with community organizations to make sure they can refer complainants to safe houses so they'll feel safer actually going forward with sexual assault charges.  

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.

Mark_Smith's picture

So wait... SWBTS admitted a criminal, so clearly they are responsible for everything the criminal does... Yeah, that's clear. Thanks.

So now no school or employer should ever hire a criminal because you are then guilty by association with anything they do. Got it.

As for the janitor job, being a janitor on a campus does not mean you have all the keys and can go anywhere at any time. Besides, if you are a woman at a dorm and a guy opens the door without permission. CALL THE POLICE.

Let's just accept Patterson violated every Title IX statute there is. Let's just say that. What does that have to do with Doe calling the police and reporting that X raped her? NOTHING.

The problem here is the victim has shifted all blame for the rape from the raper to Patterson, and apparently so have you.

Mark_Smith's picture

As I said repeatedly in earlier posts, I read every word of the complaint. I just accept it for what it is, Doe's lawyer's version of events. They are not the sole truth.

Mark_Smith's picture

To be clear, I have no reason to doubt that Doe was raped. My complaint is all the lambasting of Patterson and SWBTS like they are the thugs that practically sponsored the raper.

Also, what do these police reports say are the reason there was no charge?

Jay's picture

Mark, 

Let's set aside the rapes for now and focus on last year's SBC meeting.  When defending the decision to terminate Patterson - and just before the messengers would vote on whether or not the Trustees of the seminary should be removed - one man stepped forward to account for their decision to fire him. This is what he said, verbatim:

Last Fall our board initiated a review of the seminary’s financial condition. The chairman of the Business Administration Subcommittee of the board led that review. Shortly after the review began, Dr. Patterson began to question the legitimacy of that trustee’s eligibility to serve as a trustee and made efforts to have him removed.

In late April, after comments surfaced that Dr. Patterson had long ago made, board chairman Kevin Ueckert requested that Dr. Patterson obtain input from the chairman before making any reply. Dr. Patterson disregarded this request from the chairman of the board and issued a press release without the chairman’s input. That reply was damaging to the reputation of the seminary and was damaging to the reputation of Dr. Patterson—so much so that he himself had to issue a later apology.

As the aftermath of that first press release unfolded, Dr. Patterson refused to attend meeting after meeting of the Executive Committee, despite formal requests that he do so. I was the one on the Executive Committee saying, “Folks, we haven’t heard Dr. Patterson’s side of this story. We need to be cautious here. We need to take our time. We need to have all the facts before we do anything.” But Dr. Patterson refused to meet with us and refused to give us all of the facts.

Then, after that marathon meeting of May 22-23, Dr. Patterson became the President Emeritus of the seminary. The first thing that happened in his term as President Emeritus was this: His attorney sent an email questioning the legal validity of the full board’s decisions in the meeting of May 22-23. The basis of the claim was weak. I’ve no doubt that the action of the board would stand any challenge in the courts. But that fact notwithstanding, what is one of your seminaries to do with a President Emeritus who will work to undermine the legitimacy and validity of its board of trustees?

I am an old-time Baptist congregationalist. My church has business meetings every month because I want us to have business meetings every month. I believe in our polity. And it is a part of our polity that our entity heads do not get to remove trustees when they become an inconvenience to them, that entity heads have to answer to their boards both when they want to do so and when they don’t want to do so, that seminary employees have to abide by board decisions.

Paige Patterson is a human being made in the image of God. He is a man who has promoted some of the finest women scholars in our convention. He is a master exegete and the consummate preacher. Even today I’d vote for him for any of those things, and I’m thankful for the Conservative Resurgence and all that it accomplished. I was not out to get him; I was out to help him. But I cannot vote for him to occupy any monarchy. We are Baptists. We have no popes. We are all accountable to someone. Whatever divides us, I hope that we are all in agreement about that.

For my part, I’m accountable to you. I’m a tell-the-people-and-trust-the-Lord Baptist. Whatever you decide, I will abide by it. It has been a great honor to serve you in this way. Thank you for the trust you have placed in me. I have tried to defend your rights at SWBTS. I would urge you as you vote to consider this: Please do not rob the trustees throughout our convention of their spine. They keep our entities accountable to you. Think of the precedent this will set if we start voting out trustees every time they face a difficult decision. Will any board have the courage to hold entity heads accountable again? And if they are unaccountable to their trustees, they are unaccountable to you. If you rob the trustees of their spine, you rob the messengers of their voice.

I know that you're leaning heavily on the Paige Patterson is innocent card, but there certainly seems to be a ton of evidence that he wasn't the man you think he is, and was in fact a much more dangerous and divisive figure than anyone could tell from a distance.  Only the people he personally interacted with got to see a different side of Paige Patterson.

Also, what do these police reports say are the reason there was no charge?

Police reports aren't in the public domain.  Jane's complaint alleges that Patterson interfered with the FWPD investigation on at least two separate occasions (pg. 18, #84; pg. 19, #90), and that the police officer who took her report was the son of the SWBTS Chief of Police and the brother of the SWBTS Chaplain (pg. 17, #82).  That might, as I mentioned earlier, have something to do with it.

"Our task today is to tell people — who no longer know what sin is...no longer see themselves as sinners, and no longer have room for these categories — that Christ died for sins of which they do not think they’re guilty." - David Wells

Bert Perry's picture

Mark, do you really see no problems with admitting a criminal with an admitted history of fornication and then giving him the key to all the dorms and a reason to use it when he wants to, with little supervision?  Are you serious here?  

Do you really doubt that the plaintiff lacks the police reports, correspondence from the Pattersons, records of the leaks of Title IX records by Patterson's friends, testimony from friends and family members who were at the meetings in question, and the like?

Do you really believe that the SWBTS BOT was lying when they fired Patterson?  

I'm sorry, Mark, but you are crossing a line between legitimate skepticism into knee-jerk denialism. This is, again, one of the big reasons real victims don't come forward. 

Finally, again, if you'd read the complaint for comprehension, you'd know why charges weren't filed.  It is entirely consistent with the fact that 98% of reports of sexual assault do not end up with jail time for the perp.  Think about it a moment. 

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.

Joeb's picture

Mark I understand where your coming from.  However the evidence seems to weigh against Paige Patterson.  I’d say this gal and the Attorney will be handsomely rewarded ($$$$$$).

However if I was a victim and saw the apparent conflict interest with the Police Department I would have taken my complaint to the State Level.  Being Texas I would contact the Texas Rangers, which apparently was not done by the victim or the victim’s Attorney. The victim has the evidence indicating the matter was trying to be squished so the next highest authority would have no choice but take over the criminal investigation.

 Now pushing this issue like Mark my question was WHY.  There could be many reasons one being I can think of is  such an investigation could  also result in charges against Patterson and the Police Officer for corruption.  Being the Victim wants $$$$ they may want to use that card to get the most $$$$$.   Hence Mark still may have a good point.  Personally if was my daughter I’d want all the scum bags (excuse my french) locked up and the maximum penalty applied and do the civil suit after the fact even if it meant less $$$$$$.      

Mark with the above being said the victim still has the call about what she wants done.  If she wants the $$$$$$$$$ more then justice it’s her choice.  Again she is the victim.  

Note: Remember the child actor from the movies Home Alone 1 & 2.  It was alleged that the price he extracted out of Michael Jackson was to give him the opportunity to be a Movie Star.  Hence it was the Victim’s choice.  

Mark_Smith's picture

I never said Patterson acted correctly. I never said he treated the woman right as we would expect a Christian leader. The board fired him for as much.

What I have said is HE DID NOT COMMIT CIVIL VIOLATIONS TO AWARD HER MONEY.

What civil law did he violate? He was mean to her? He said ugly things about the mom? He hired a guy who turned out to be a bad man? I don't get it...

OJ Simpson, for example, was shown to have reasonably been responsible for the deaths of two people. The court ordered that their families be compensated. That is civil court.

What did Patterson and SWBTS take away from Doe? Everything in the civil complaint is blame shifting from the alleged perpetrator to SWBTS/Patterson.

Bert Perry's picture

Mark,first of all, Patterson has probably committed a criminal offense or two by interfering with a police investigation and releasing Title IX documents.  Maybe some others.

That said, civil lawsuits do not require a law to be broken.  All that is required is for the plaintiff to argue that the actions of the defendant led to an injury on their part, and that argument is made stronger if the general best practice in the area is otherwise.  In this case, Patterson violated so many best practices, it's not even funny, from failing to supervise a known criminal to respecting the privacy of Title IX documents. 

And yes, saying mean things about the plaintiff and her mother, especially when not true, are grounds for a lawsuit.  It's called "slander" or "defamation".  

Please; if you do not come up to speed on what kind of things are grounds for a civil suit, stay as far away from ministry as you can.  Moreover, if you cannot comprehend why a person might not want to risk another meeting with a guy who put a gun in her face and raped her, please be quiet on the topic. 

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.

Jay's picture

Civil lawsuits aren’t brought because the accuser wants to get rich or make money.  Lawsuits like this are generally brought because the victim either wants an acknowledgement that they were wronged OR because they are looking for systemic change so that it can’t happen to someone else.  That’s what I think Roe is looking for with the lawsuit.

John Engler (at MSU) made payout offers to several Nassau victims and it rightly infuriated them.

"Our task today is to tell people — who no longer know what sin is...no longer see themselves as sinners, and no longer have room for these categories — that Christ died for sins of which they do not think they’re guilty." - David Wells

Bert Perry's picture

I've been reading the Twitter feed for John Manly, attorney for many of Nassar's victims, for a couple of years now, and I can affirm that if one reads between the lines, many of Manly's clients  appear to want mostly an apology and change.  (probably not "or", but "and")  So I can affirm Jay's points #1 and #2.

That noted, as I believe I noted before, this kind of abuse leaves a mark, a mark that manifests itself in mental illness and the costs of that--psychiatrists and inpatient care don't come cheap.  Plus, those with PTSD (talk to a soldier if you doubt this )  often become disabled to the point they can't hold a job.  In my view, a lot of the lawsuits that are coming up now are really going to end up with no extra expenses, but rather the accounting is going to be cleared up.

Put gently, there is a minority of Nassar's victims who are financially and otherwise appearing to do very well, but there is a much larger group who would be on Medicaid and other public aid without the settlement.  So you the taxpayer get to pay for it either in your taxes for welfare and such, or in your taxes to pay off the bonds MSU sold to pay the settlement.

I actually think these big civil settlements may be a cheaper way of going about the matter for a simple reason; when welfare pays things, nobody knows or cares what the individual actually needs.  When the victim is paying things out of her (his) own pocket, it's very clear what the purpose/goal is.  Huge plus.

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.

Jay's picture

I actually think these big civil settlements may be a cheaper way of going about the matter for a simple reason; when welfare pays things, nobody knows or cares what the individual actually needs.  When the victim is paying things out of her (his) own pocket, it's very clear what the purpose/goal is.  Huge plus.

Not to mention that saying "I was wrong and I am sorry - let's fix the problems you pointed out" is a whole lot cheaper than hiring attorneys, engaging in discovery and litigation, and the spiritual costs of reliving the abuse or living through a trial(s).  There's also the distinct possibility that other, far more damaging information could come out as well while litigation and testimony is going on that would compound the mess.

Maybe that's why Jesus tells us to settle our accounts with accusers before getting to court in Matthew 5:25? #Jesuswasright

"Our task today is to tell people — who no longer know what sin is...no longer see themselves as sinners, and no longer have room for these categories — that Christ died for sins of which they do not think they’re guilty." - David Wells

Bert Perry's picture

Jay wrote:

<my comments snipped>

Not to mention that saying "I was wrong and I am sorry - let's fix the problems you pointed out" is a whole lot cheaper than hiring attorneys, engaging in discovery and litigation, and the spiritual costs of reliving the abuse or living through a trial(s).  There's also the distinct possibility that other, far more damaging information could come out as well while litigation and testimony is going on that would compound the mess.

Maybe that's why Jesus tells us to settle our accounts with accusers before getting to court in Matthew 5:25? #Jesuswasright

Regarding the reality that other information could come out, I don't know how much settling early helps, because one of the things that survivors tend to ask for is a fairly comprehensive (e.g. Boz Tchividjian/GRACE, PII) investigation of the culture that led to te problems.  In a nutshell, the plea is to come clean with everything--not just the case at hand. I do think it's the right thing to do, but I also understand why people are "going to need to be persuaded" to do so.

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.

Mark_Smith's picture

With all due respect, I am dialoguing with you about people lambasting Patterson and attacking SWBTS because its cool to do, and you come at me like I'm a fool? That I "should not enter ministry" if I don't know civil law... please focus your correction somewhere else.That was quite rude and unkind of you.

Jay's picture

Since we discussed apologies a few posts ago, here's a relevant article that may help some of the SI leadership and members understand what role a proper apology plays and what it looks like.  We generally haven't done a good job of explaining this to people from a theological perspective, at least in my opinion.

Sadly, the institution in the wrong might ask their victims to carry their shame so they can retain legitimacy in the eyes of their followers, unwilling to fully acknowledge that the shameful behavior belongs to them and the legitimacy belongs to the ones speaking the truth about their behavior.

Why are authentic apologies so feared? Perhaps because the shame would expose their illegitimacy, and they would lose what is no longer their right to have: following, influence, power, status, (and what is often most important to them): money. And so they fearfully run from public shame, like thieves anxiously running down the street with bags of money clutched over their shoulders, knowing the fabric of those bags are tearing apart and their money might soon be scattered by the wind.

The simple truth is that many organizations will not apologize as they ought because their leaders fear being seen as unqualified (an identity crisis), and because they fear costly lawsuits or loss of a following (a monetary crisis). Out of that fear emerges the following non-apologies.

  • Apologies that condemn
  • Apologies that appease
  • Apologies that excuse
  • Apologies that justify
  • Apologies that self promotes
  • Apologies that asks for sympathy

....If the institution has the moral courage to give an authentic apology, then this S.C.O.R.E. card might provide a helpful test. It is in no way comprehensive. Relationships are complex. We can’t create blueprints that tell us precisely what to do and how to do it. Relationships don’t work that way, and neither do the apologies that are inevitably needed within them. They are acts that ought to be highly contextualized to meet the needs of the situation.

  • Surrender
  • Confession
  • Ownership.
  • Recognition
  • Empathy

    It is at this point that the organization has finally absorbed the truth of their wrongdoing and the gravity of their wrongs. They feel the weight of the hurt and the shame, and know they are defenseless, at the mercy of others, and must begin the difficult work of restitution and restoration. They feel it. And out of that broken place of surrender, confession, ownership, recognition, and empathy might emerge the words, “We are so sorry.”

"Our task today is to tell people — who no longer know what sin is...no longer see themselves as sinners, and no longer have room for these categories — that Christ died for sins of which they do not think they’re guilty." - David Wells

Joeb's picture

I’m usually the bad boy of this group and being taken to the woodshed.  Now I find myself more and more agreeing with Don Johnson and Aaron.  That must be real scary for them.  Watch out Don.  

One day I may show up at Don’s  house for dinner to put the feed bag on. Don I like my steak medium and I’m a Coca Colaholic.  I like my Cokes very cold on ice.  Pepsi or Royal Crown will do in a pinch.  My favorite memory as a kid in Iowa was going with my father to Beaver Park in Cedar Rapids Iowa in his 62 Red Corvair and having a Ice cold Bottle of Royal Crown Cola from the concession stand.  

Bert Perry's picture

Mark_Smith wrote:

With all due respect, I am dialoguing with you about people lambasting Patterson and attacking SWBTS because its cool to do, and you come at me like I'm a fool? That I "should not enter ministry" if I don't know civil law... please focus your correction somewhere else.That was quite rude and unkind of you.

I do not criticize Patterson because it is "cool".  Quite frankly, I grieve for the damage he's done to theological conservatism by his actions, and I discuss why his actions were wrong with the hope and prayer that others might be persuaded not to follow his example.    

Regarding yourself, it is not "rude" or "unkind" to point out to you that you need to get a clue about civil tort law if you want to go into ministry.  It is quite frankly the kindest thing to do, because those who ignore these principles (e.g. Paige Patterson) bring great disgrace on the Gospel, and (as Mr. Patterson is about to learn the hard way) can also result in significant personal loss.  

You want to fly into that wood chipper?  Be my guest, but don't say I didn't warn you.

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.

dcbii's picture

EditorModerator

****** MODERATOR ACTION ******

OK, it's time for everyone to calm down a bit and take a step back.  Threads on "me too"-type topics can tend to generate a lot of heat with little light.  It would be appreciated if none of you try to stand in judgment too strongly on a case where none of you have first-hand knowledge, and it definitely doesn't help to assume or attack the motivation or understanding of others.. That gets uncomfortably close to direct personal attacks.  Stick to what facts are actually in evidence and stay away from assumptions about those you are disagreeing with.

Dave Barnhart

Bert Perry's picture

Regarding the claim that people are talking about things where they don't have "first hand knowledge", is that really true?  Let's be honest here; a lot of us have watched video of Patterson's objectionable teachings ("built", "black eye", etc..), a lot of us have read the leaked documents from Patterson when he was trying to defend himself, and all of us know very well that the SWBTS board of trustees considered a lot of this very evidence before firing him.  

I submit that the intensity here is because those who have read and seen the evidence discussed above are incredulous that people would act as if that evidence did not matter, and quite frankly it's also because ignoring fairly obvious evidence is part of a pattern that has had disastrous results for the church at ABWE, Chuck Phelps' church in NH, Sovereign Grace MInistries, New Tribes, BJU, Southern Baptist churches (Houston Chronicle articles), and elsewhere.  The intensity is really a plea "please think about this and don't let this be you."

 

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.

Joeb's picture

Bert you hit the nail on the head. Bert’s Point should be well taken by all Pastors on SI.  Even after all that has happened on these issues churches and mission organizations are still engaging in the same STUPID CRIMINAL ACTIVITY.  Every week or every other week the same stuff keeps popping up.  CAM in Ohio.  The wife of the Pastor at a HYLES Anderson Church in Illinois, .  A very vocal Baptist Pastor in Texas regarding wanting the death penalty for Abortionists   

No one group is innocent in these organizational corruption matters.  It’s not just the IFB or the SBC.  It’s groups and churches and schools in all of Evangelical Christianity in America.

 With that being said there is many more fine groups of people in Evangelical America keeping on point and the mission of changing hearts and minds through Christ and doing the right thing.  More doing the right thing then the wrong thing.  We can thank are Lord for that.  Schools like Allegheny Bible College Faith Baptist Bible College Overseas Missionary Fellowship and many others operating with no hint of scandal and when issues come up the handle them appropriately. Praise the Lord. I say Amen.  

Mark_Smith's picture

As I have pointed out before, SWBTS firing Patterson does not mean he is civilly liable for the charges against him. Just today, I read a news story about a lawsuit filed by a 15-year old's family against the Carnival cruise line. It seems the daughter went on a cruise with her grandmother. "Mobs of men" got her drunk and repeatedly raped her. The family is suing the cruise line for not protecting the daughter. That charges are very similar to the list in the Patterson case. See, just because someone files a civil case does not mean the person is responsible.

Second, you seem to be guilty of guilt by association, a logical fallacy you point out all the time. What does what happened to Chuck Phelps, or any other school or church have to do with SWBTS? Nothing. You can transfer nothing. As the moderator said, you do not have full access to all the information about the SWBTS case. I would think some humility would be warranted.

Bert Perry's picture

Sure, Mark, it doesn't prove that Patterson is going to lose the lawsuit, but what it does prove is that a group of Godly men took a look at the same evidence a jury might see, and they decided that the evidence demonstrated to their standard of proof (which I assume is actually higher than in a court of law--we don't like to send our heroes packing in Baptist-dom) that Patterson had done some things in this case which made it impossible for him to continue there. That's not a good sign for the defense, to put it mildly. 

Regarding the case you mentioned, you're confusing the fact that someone won in court (insufficient evidence) with a general lack of liability.  Go to a bartender in a respectable restaurant/bar and ask him  is he's been told not to serve boisterous drunks.  Five will get you ten he'll laugh, give you the criteria he uses, and then point out the bouncer standing discreetly by the door.  He's there for a reason, specifically that businesses do in fact have a responsibility to keep their customers safe.  

(in the Patterson case, again, this is why college applications generally have a question about criminal record, and often request permission for a background check)

Regarding the pointers to other tragedies, it's not guilt by association, but rather I'm pointing out that the same pattern--refusal to take evidence seriously--is there in all of them.  It's our fundagelical baptistic pattern.

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.

dcbii's picture

EditorModerator

A definition of firsthand knowledge (one among many similar):

"Firsthand knowledge refers to something which the witness actually saw or heard, as distinguished from something he learned from some other person or source. It is also a knowledge that is gained through firsthand observation or experience, as distinguished from a belief based on what someone else has said."

I submit that reading reports does not count as "firsthand" knowledge, either with SWBTS, the Mueller Report, or in general.  I did say that the discussion should stick to facts in evidence.  Reports would be included in that, and they are valid for discussion, but they are not the same as firsthand knowledge.  If you are not actually involved in the situation being discussed, then any knowledge you have is still incomplete.

But regardless of whether you agree with the definition I've posted or not, if the nudge I posted above isn't sufficient to get all of you to stay away from assumptions about another's motivation, not only will this thread be closed, but posting privileges may also be restricted.  I get that we should learn from mistakes made by others that could be either costly or really bad for Christian testimony.  Such "intensity" should still not result in, or even lean towards, personal attack.

Dave Barnhart

Jay's picture

Just saw this update on Jane Roe's assailant.  It turns out he was arrested for several crimes after his expulsion from SWBTS.

I also wanted to note how many of the details in this story dovetail with Jane Roe's complaint against both Patterson and SWBTS.

"Our task today is to tell people — who no longer know what sin is...no longer see themselves as sinners, and no longer have room for these categories — that Christ died for sins of which they do not think they’re guilty." - David Wells

Jay's picture

There, he went on to woo and later to allegedly choke an unsuspecting girlfriend, who managed to escape and later sought help from the court.

Cole later stalked and threatened to kill her, according to allegations in a civil protective order...

Where have I heard that before?

Oh yeah, it's in the complaint filed by Jane Roe.  It's so weird that this happened to another woman the exact same way that Roe claims it was done to her.

"Our task today is to tell people — who no longer know what sin is...no longer see themselves as sinners, and no longer have room for these categories — that Christ died for sins of which they do not think they’re guilty." - David Wells

Mark_Smith's picture

report to the police, not your university president.

Bert Perry's picture

.....universities have a very clear interest in ensuring the safety of all of their students, and Title IX buttresses this legally.

Regarding what Jay links, we will probably see a lot more of this as discovery progresses, and (again) if my reading of the compliant is even partially correct, "Roe" is sitting on a treasure trove of documents that is going to make life "very interesting" for both SWBTS and Paige Patterson.  Worth noting as well is that the plaintiff has engaged a lawyer with 23 years of experience in education law--she is not playing around.  

If there is not said treasure trove of evidence, and if the case falls flat on its face, I'd favor some level of discipline for the lawyer, because it's cruel to every party involved.  That said, she hasn't survived and thrived in one of the most contentious areas of law because she's stupid, so you know where I'm betting my nickel.

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.

Mark_Smith's picture

I work at a university. I am trying to imagine a woman calling the president's secretary and saying, "I would like to schedule an appointment to meet the President." The administrative assistant asks why. "Because I would like to report a rape." The assistant gives the police phone number...

Mark_Smith's picture

After reporting the rape to police, the student goes to the Title IX coordinator at the school, not the president, and files a report.

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