Farson was suspended last semester for his involvement in a Nov. 8 altercation, in which he allegedly broke another student’s nose. He filed a civil suit against the College for doling out what he considered to be an unfair punishment, according to The Daily Hampshire Gazette.
Farson went through the College’s standard disciplinary procedure in the month following the altercation. “He had a hearing before the Committee on Discipline, which voted to suspend him,” said Director of Media Relations Paul Statt.
Statt noted that a suspension is not as drastic as expulsion or dismissal and that Farson will be allowed to return to the College next January without having to re-apply for admission.
In a letter to Farson, Gerety wrote that “the record of the case makes clear that you were able to present an extensive and impressive defense on your own behalf,” according to The Gazette.
Gerety expressed his belief that Farson used unnecessary force when participating in the altercation. He denied Farson’s appeal in late January, according to The Gazette.
After going through the College’s appeals process, Farson decided to take legal action.
Farson’s largest grievance, according to The Gazette, was the refusal of the disciplinary committee to hear one of his witnesses.
Farson’s lawyer Henry L. Rigali cited his client’s dissatisfaction with the fact that Amherst had no preset “standard by which to judge and discipline,” Farson’s actions, according to The (Springfield) Union-News.
When asked for his opinion about the fairness of Farson’s suspension, a student familiar with the incident, who chose to remain anonymous, stated that the College’s decision was “definitely fair.”
“It was a shame that none of the other kids [involved in the incident] came forward,” the student said. “They left Farson to take the fall for all of them.”
However, the student stated that Farson “deserved what he got.”
Farson could not be reached for comment on the dismissal of his motion.
Farson may still choose to file a civil lawsuit-The Gazette reported that Farson was suing for “reasonable monetary damages and attorney’s fees.”
In her ruling, however, Judge Bertha D. Josephson wrote that any harm suffered by Farson because of his suspension would be outweighed by the harm the College would incur if it were prevented from being able to discipline students, according to The (Springfield) Union-News.