Kearns and Sons RS Aesthetics

Poor handling by UM president


The Missoulian (2/25/12) covered the news conference held by The University of Montana President Royce Engstom to address the alleged assaults on two female students two weeks earlier.

I find Mr. Engstrom’s attitude and management of the whole series of tragic events unbelievable. It leaves me with the feeling that he might have thought the passage of time might make the problem go away. Well guess what, after the Dean of students Mr. Charles Couture communicated with the Saudi National that he was being accused of sexual assault and provided him with a seven day window of opportunity to leave this country, what did you expect him to do? So much for your law enforcement and criminal investigative talents.

President Engstrom did say on Friday that “the campus is safer because of the man’s departure.” I would agree that’s true, but that constitutes his second serious mistake. President Engstrom, Mr. Couture and the Board of Regents Chairman Mr. Clayton Christian (who is reportedly “extremely pleased” with how President Engstrom and his staff are handling this situation) should have gone with him!

I have two granddaughters enrolled at The University of Montana and the possibility of a third next year. Hopefully President Engstrom and his cronies can understand my concern and aggravation. My heart goes out to the two women who were victimized by this man, and then again by the university that let him slip away. Those two young ladies will have to live with this injustice the rest of their lives.

Dick Owings


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