MISSOULA, Mont. (AP) - Montana University System officials are returning to the state Supreme Court to appeal a district judge’s order that it release information on any action the commissioner of higher education might have taken after a University of Montana court recommended the football team’s quarterback be expelled over a rape complaint.
The U.S. Department of Education advised the Montana University System against releasing the records to author Jon Krakauer, citing the federal Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, commission spokesman Kevin McRae said.
Krakauer sought the information for a book about sexual assaults on college campuses, including accusations that former quarterback Jordan Johnson raped a female acquaintance in 2012. The book has since been published.
The state’s high court had previously dismissed the university system’s appeal, saying it was premature because the issue of attorney’s fees involving the lower court case still needed to be resolved.
Krakauer’s attorney, Mike Meloy of Helena, said Monday that both sides submitted a document to the District Court that addresses the fees.
“Obviously, this thing has gone on for a while, and I think both parties would like to get us back on track again in the Supreme Court,” Meloy told the Missoulian (https://bit.ly/1gkCZ7i ).
In September, District Court Judge Kathy Seeley of Helena ordered the commissioner to allow Krakauer to inspect the documents he requested about what action Commissioner of Higher Education Clayton Christian took after a university court recommended Johnson be expelled. He was not expelled, but redshirted during the 2012 football season. A jury acquitted him of criminal charges in March 2013.
Information from: Missoulian, https://www.missoulian.com
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