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She accused a professor of offering a better grade for sex. Then she tried to destroy evidence.


Held ex at knifepoint and deleted his files

One of the purposes of “victim centered” sexual-misconduct investigations is to make accusers “appear more innocent,” according to the original handbook on the issue.

It’s going to take a lot of investigative work to make S.N. look innocent to any degree.

Champaign County (Illinois) charged S.N. and a male friend with “felony counts of aggravated battery and aggravated unlawful restraint of another person” after they allegedly held her ex-boyfriend at knifepoint, The Chronicle of Higher Education reports.

S.N.’s ex isn’t the man she accused, however. That would be her former professor at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Joseph Petry. Her ex may simply have the evidence that undermines her claims against Petry.

She was in his economics class – unbeknownst to Petry, he claims, since he has at least 1,000 students each semester. They met on a social media platform and exchanged photos and “communications of a social nature” nine months after her class ended. The photos were her idea, and she suggested Snapchat. He still didn’t know she was a former student, Petry claims. He looks about 30 years older than her. (He doesn’t have great judgment.)

She didn’t get an A in his class, and when she met Petry in his office in September, she tried to convince him to retroactively change her grade or give her an A if she retook the class, the professor claims. He refused. Months later, she accused him of offering to improve her grade in exchange for sex, first anonymously on Reddit and then publicly on Facebook.

MORE: Victim-centered investigations create new victims


Petry agreed to retire in exchange for the university dropping the investigation, but UIUC says it’s still investigating and he’s on administrative leave. If it misrepresented its offer to Petry, UIUC would seem to be in breach of contract.

Here’s where S.N.’s ex, who hasn’t been named, comes in:

The police said Petry’s accuser … deleted information from her former boyfriend’s computer and phone while her friend allegedly held a knife to the ex-boyfriend’s throat. The ex-boyfriend wasn’t physically hurt, and he told the police he believed the information [S. N.] was after related to her harassment complaint against Petry.

She brought her friend William Farrell to her ex’s apartment. Farrell demanded that the ex delete his Reddit account, and had a “folding knife” in a hip holster. The ex grabbed the knife and threw it aside but she gave it back to Farrell, who held the ex at knifepoint “while [S. N.] deleted files from his computer and cellphone,” according to state’s attorney Julia Rietz.

She has pleaded not guilty to the charges. Her lawyer insists that a “proper investigation” will get the charges dismissed.

She’d better hope the investigators have gone through victim-centered training, so that every dubious action she undertook is explained as a byproduct of sexual victimization by Petry.

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About the Author
Associate Editor
Greg Piper served as associate editor of The College Fix from 2014 to 2021.