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Family of UTA student who committed suicide files lawsuit: University attacked our son

(AP Photo/Eric Gay)

(AP Photo/Eric Gay)

The University of Texas at Arlington (UTA) is being sued in the wake of one of their students committing suicide. The student blamed administrators for ruining his life and picking sides in a dispute.

Sitting in his class at the University of Texas at Arlington, Thomas Klocke was approached and hit on by a gay classmate, Nicholas Watson, on May 19, 2016. After he had rejected the unwanted sexual advances, the two men had a heated confrontation.

According to the lawsuit filed by Klocke’s parents, Watson went to to Heather Snow, UTA’s Associate Vice President of Student Affairs and Dean of Students. The Klocke’s lawyer Kenneth Chaiken told Red Alert Politics that Watson and Snow had a friendship, and the administrator worked to protect him.

Snow helped Watson draft a sexual misconduct complaint against Klocke claiming that he called him a “faggot” and told him to “consider killing yourself.” Snow told Watson to send the complaint letter to only her and no other administrator. This ignored disciplinary procedures that fall within Title IX and denied Klocke his right to an impartial investigation and hearing. It resulted in assigning another administrator named Daniel Moore to punishing Klocke despite the fact that Watson’s claim was baseless.

According to Chaiken, administrators admitted through an email that they had no evidence against Klocke.

Chaiken said to Red Alert Politics that their punishment forbids Klocke from attending the class he took with Watson, causing him to fail for the semester. Additionally, he had a permanent mark on his disciplinary record, which would have made it much harder for him to get into graduate school.

Klocke was embarrassed, suffered mental anguish and pain as he saw all his dreams collapsing around him, and on June 2, 2016, he killed himself.

Red Alert Politics asked Chaiken what his parents are looking for in their lawsuit against the UTA.”Accountability for attacking their son,” he responded. “This devastated their family.”

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