A community college administrator was charged with attempted theft and disorderly conduct after taking a conservative speaker's notes from the podium during a controversial event late last month at the University of Connecticut, the Hartford Courant reported, citing UConn police.
Catherine Gregory — the 33-year-old associate director of career services and advising at Quinebaug Valley Community College — turned herself in Sunday after learning police had a warrant charging her with attempted sixth-degree larceny and disorderly conduct, the paper reported.
Catherine Gregory turned herself in on Sunday. (Image source: WTNH-TV video screenshot)
What does the arrest warrant say?
- The arrest warrant affidavit says Gregory approached the podium where Lucian Wintrich was speaking Nov. 28 and held what appeared to be paper or papers “taken from the lectern,” the Courant reported.
- She turned, folded the paper or papers and walked up the aisle toward the crowd, the paper added, citing the affidavit.
- Wintrich — a White House correspondent for the Gateway Pundit — followed Gregory up the aisle, grabbed her with his right arm over her right shoulder and got the papers back after a scuffle that lasted several seconds, the Courant reported, citing the affidavit.
Video captured the entire incident at the speech titled, “It’s OK To Be White."
Image source: WTNH-TV video screenshot
After the confrontation, officers took Wintrich from the room. He was charged with second-degree breach of peace, the paper said, adding that the case against him was dropped.
Image source: YouTube screenshot
What does Gregory's lawyer have to say?
- Jon Schoenhorn, who is representing Gregory, told Inside Higher Ed that his client never intended to keep the speech but was trying in a “mild and measured way” to calm the situation: “What Ms. Gregory did was the equivalent of unplugging a microphone."
- Schoenhorn told the Courant he wants charges against Gregory dropped since Wintrich's charges were dropped.
What does Quinebaug Valley Community College have to say?
- The school didn't immediately return the paper's request for comment.
- Police said in the arrest affidavit that Gregory is on leave from her job, the Courant added.
- Quinebaug Valley told WVIT-TV that Gregory received death threats and that school officials added extra security in response.
- Shortly after the incident, the community college's president released a statement without naming Gregory, admitting a school employee attended Wintrich’s speech “on her personal time … as a private citizen” and that the school learned about the incident via the media.
What else did the newspaper say?
- The Hartford Courant ran an editorial titled, “College Adviser Acted Like A Delinquent At Lucian Wintrich’s Speech.”
- The editorial added that Gregory “isn’t fit to advise students at her day job at Quinebaug Valley Community College” and “should face disciplinary action” over her “shameful behavior.”
- The editorial also blasted the school’s statement on Gregory as “cowardly.”
- “We abhor Mr. Wintrich’s message. It is baleful,” the editorial added. “On one thing, though, we have to say that he’s right: ‘Even if you disagree with a speaker, they have the right to finish their speech unmolested.'”
- “There are time-honored ways to practice nonviolent civil disobedience at speeches: signs, walk-outs, audience members turning their backs on a speaker,” it concluded. “But grabbing his speech off the podium isn’t one of them.”
(H/T: The College Fix)