Harassment hearing postponed as Riedmann considers appeal

Michelle Herrick

Michelle Herrick

The sexual harassment disciplinary hearing for the campus radio station manager was put on hold this week while Jacy Riedmann, who filed the original charge, considers an appeal.

Ashley-Kenneth Allen, who manages KSDJ 90.7-FM, was found guilty of sexual harassment Aug. 31. The Student Conduct Committee was supposed to have met Sept. 9 to decide his punishment, but Riedmann wanted more time to think about the appeal.

Riedmann said she has until Sept. 22 to decide if she wants to appeal the findings of the investigation, which found Allen guilty of a broader sexual harassment charge, but did not find him guilty of individually sexually harassing her.

“Ashley did individually sexually harass me,” Riedmann said. “He’ll never understand the severity of this until it’s made clear to him how serious it is.”

Riedmann worked as a DJ at the station during the 2004 fall semester and then was hired as creative services director spring semester. She has since transferred to the University of Nebraska-Lincoln where she is majoring in radio.

In her original complaint, Riedmann said Allen asked her to dress provocatively when selling underwriting, made remarks about her sex life and forced her to use sexual innuendoes in station advertisements.

Carey Deaver, the equal opportunity officer, said in a letter to Riedmann that both sides were involved in inappropriate behavior and remarks, so she wasn’t able to prove that Riedmann was individually sexually harassed by Allen.

“However, it is my opinion that your allegations regarding sexual remarks and innuendo at KSDJ are true,” Deaver said. “Based on this, I believe that Mr. Allen has participated in the creation of a demeaning environment as defined by the SDSU’s harassment policy.”

The policy describes this type of harassment as, “Sexual harassment may also be established by showing participation in the creation of an intimidating, hostile or demeaning environment.”

When it comes to the appeal, the Student to Student Harassment Complaint Process says a complainant can only appeal the decision if the equal opportunity officer determines that there is not a reasonable basis for the complaint.

But Dean of Student Affairs Marysz Rames said the complainant can appeal no matter what the outcome.

“If there’s a disagreement over whether it is a reasonable basis,” she said. “If it’s not what they had hoped for, they can appeal. Harassment is not a black and white issue.”

If Riedmann does decide to appeal the conclusion of the investigation, SDSU President Peggy Gordon Miller would make the final decision on the case.

“The president can throw it out, uphold the decision or change it,” Rames said.

This is the part that makes Riedmann nervous.

“I’m not comfortable with the charge as it is, but if I appeal it, there’s a possibility it’ll get thrown out,” she said.