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Report finds Wayne State University’s former head of journalism had pattern of sexual harassment

Photo courtesy of Michigan Radio

An investigation from Wayne State University into the conduct of its former head of Journalism, Jack Lessenberry, found a pattern of sexual harassment and inappropriate behavior.

Lessenberry resigned from the University in June following resignations as a contributor at Michigan Radio and the Detroit Metro Times.

In documents obtained by the Michigan Public Radio Network, an investigator outlined allegations of Lessenberry’s most egregious behavior, which dated back to 2005. They include inappropriate remarks, unwanted attention and kissing, and retaliating against students who rebuffed him.

In one instance, the report shows, Lessenberry emailed a student quote “Some day I shall kiss you, the jail time will be worth it.”

The investigator noted that Lessenberry violated University policies on non-discrimination, sexual harassment, and potentially sexual assault.

“Had he not resigned,” the investigator said, “I would have recommended the termination of his employment.”

Lessenberry could not be reached for comment.