UM System Board of Curators approves hiring of outside independent counsel
COLUMBIA, Mo. – The University of Missouri System’s Board of Curators tonight voted to approve the hiring of outside, independent legal counsel to investigate how the university addressed matters related to former MU student Sasha Menu Courey.
In voting to approve the recommendation of University of Missouri System President Tim Wolfe, the board stipulated that the firm hired must have independence from the university.
“Ms. Courey’s story is very tragic and sad, and our sympathy and prayers are with her family, friends and teammates,” said University of Missouri Board of Curators Chair Don Downing. “The board wants to take an independent look at what happened here. Separately, our chancellors are promptly reviewing their campus policies and procedures concerning the prevention and reporting of sexual assaults and availability of mental health services, and President Wolfe has rightly committed to devoting additional resources to the extent those policies and procedures are found to be lacking.”
“Sexual assaults are all too common on college campuses across our country, as President Obama emphasized last week,” Downing continued. “We need to do all we can do to address these issues at the University of Missouri, and provide appropriate assistance to those who are victimized.”
The board’s next step will be to select and hire a firm to conduct the inquiry. Once selected, the independent counsel will report back to the full Board of Curators no later than April 11, 2014, the board’s next meeting in Rolla, with findings and conclusions.