University officials said the “profanity-laced tirade” had disrupted the learning environment and caused students, faculty, and staff to feel unsafe.
Stephens is currently employed as a graduate teaching assistant in the department of theatre, where he is also a doctoral student.
Diane Goddard, the vice provost for administration and finance, penned a letter to describe the events that led to Stephens’ banning from Twente Hall.
Stephens showed up at the dean’s office “unannounced and without an appointment.”
Lawrence Journal-World reported:
Stephens, according to Goddard, then “demanded that the Dean send an email to members of the School — telling him you would not leave until the message was sent, and attempting to dictate the precise terms of the message.”
“You then began shouting at the Dean, from the doorway, and your voice could be heard up and down the halls,” she wrote. “Your shouting — captured on video that I reviewed — disrupted classrooms, and caused instructors and other students to fear for their personal safety.”
Stephens later submitted a statement to the college newspaper saying he was upset about racial issues at the school and used profanity but didn’t threaten the dean.
“I used [the F-word] a lot throughout the four-minute conversation, but did not attack him, advance towards him, threaten him in any way, and was at least three to four feet away from him the entire time,” Stephens wrote about the incident, adding that Smokowski “didn’t [expletive] care about” people of color.
Stephens could potentially be arrested if he steps out of line again.
“Please note that if you engage in a similar disruptive and threatening conduct in other University buildings, you may be subject to arrest for disorderly conduct, and this ban may be expanded to include the entire campus,” Goddard wrote.
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