Skip to main content

$74k probe fails to find source of U of M sexual harassment leak

The independent investigation took about four months.

Whoever leaked details about a sexual misconduct scandal at the University of Minnesota appears to have gotten away with it.

This is despite a lengthy – and costly – third-party probe into the controversy, which began in May after someone tipped off KSTP that a high-ranking athletics official had been accused of sexual harassment. 

On Thursday, the U of M's Board of Regents announced the completion of the review, and that its results were "inconclusive."

The university says it spent $74,400 and about 150 hours to find the source of the leak, which heaped a lot of unwanted attention on an athletics program already reeling from two recent high-profile scandals (namely, the Norwood Teague affair, and the sex assault case involving Gophers football players). 

The investigation, which was handled by a high-powered Minneapolis attorney, looked into "electronic mail and cell telephone records of Regents and other University personnel," and included interviews with people who had access to the leaked information, according to a statement from the U.

"Even if inconclusive," the university says, "this review demonstrates the University of Minnesota’s commitment to respecting the confidentiality of information concerning individuals within the University community."

The school "now considers the review to be closed."

Background

The leaked information concerned an internal investigation into alleged misconduct by Randel Handel, an associate athletics director and key Gophers fundraiser. 

The U eventually confirmed in a statement to KSTP that Handel had violated its sexual harassment policy, after an employee complained she was subjected to unwanted touching, hugging and inappropriate comments.

The subsequent investigation into who blabbed it to the media was controversial in its own right, however.

“It was a criminal waste of money,” Jim Carter, a former Gophers football player and once a candidate for the Board of Regents, told the Star Tribune on Thursday

He also told the paper the university would have "kicked (the harassment) under the rug and hid it" if not for the leak. 

As for Handel, he was demoted and suspended following the report. 

Next Up

hennepin county medical center

Boy, 7, dies after being pulled from pool in south Minneapolis

The boy was pulled from a pool at a home in south Minneapolis.

Screen Shot 2022-06-28 at 8.32.18 AM

Nashville man leaving wedding shot in the face in Minneapolis

He was leaving a wedding when gunfire erupted near the Stone Arch Bridge Saturday night.

image

Abogados Café in St. Paul is the first law-themed coffee shop in America

The new business is Minnesota's first Latina-owned coffee shop.

Clydesdale

Man dies after being run over by his Clydesdale in St. Cloud

The accident happened Sunday afternoon at the St. Cloud MAC.

Brandon Gardas

St. Michael standoff suspect charged, bail set at $10 million

A judge on Monday set the high bail due to "very significant concerns of public safety" regarding Brandon Gardas.

20210722_hhc_570

Minnesota's premier trauma center housed at HCMC

The Minneapolis center is nationally recognized in pediatric trauma

Crisp & Green

Crisp & Green opening 13th store in Twin Cities in July

The fast-casual salad and grains restaurant has exploded onto the food scene.

FLickr - Target Field 2019 - mark grabe

Twins to host post-game concert with country star at Target Field

Country singer Cole Swindell is expected to perform for up to 75 minutes after the conclusion of the Blue Jays-Twins contest.

10974344_886755688011981_7448860726679919201_o

Canton Restaurant closes after nearly 40 years in Burnsville

It's the end of an era in the Twin Cities restaurant world.

Screen Shot 2022-06-27 at 12.47.20 PM

Luck strikes in Minnesota: lottery winners in Duluth, Grand Marais

The North Shore just so happened to be a lucky place to be this past weekend.

Related

Evan Ng, University of Minnesota student suing the school over Title IX.

Student athlete suing U of M for cutting men's gymnastics team

The lawsuit says the decision was "sex-based discrimination."

University of minnesota sign

University of Minnesota reaches settlement after professor sexually harassed student

The Minnesota Department of Human Rights investigated the incident.

Accusations and leaks: Gophers athletics is embroiled in more controversy

It centers around an accusation of sexual harassment against an associate athletics director.

Accusations and leaks: Gophers athletics is embroiled in more controversy

It centers around an accusation of sexual harassment against an associate athletics director.

Report: The U of M could be selling the naming rights to Mariucci Arena

The naming rights to the 24-year-old building are about to sold.

Report: The U of M could be selling the naming rights to Mariucci Arena

The naming rights to the 24-year-old building are about to sold.