Publish date:

Esteemed University of Minnesota professor is sentenced for domestic assault

He had pleaded guilty to a gross misdemeanor earlier this year.
Aaron Doering

A respected University of Minnesota professor will spend almost 6 months at a Hennepin County workhouse after admitting domestic assault.

Aaron Doering, 47, is a professor of learning technologies, a co-director of the U of M's LT Media Lab, and a noted climate change speaker and educator. 

He pleaded guilty in April to gross misdemeanor domestic assault by strangulation and violating a domestic abuse no-contact order.

He had initially been charged with a felony, but it was reduced to a gross misdemeanor in exchange for a guilty plea, with Doering sentenced to 365 days in the workhouse, of which he'll serve 180.

He won't have to serve the remaining 185 provided he successfully serves 2 years of probation, which includes undergoing alcohol addiction and mental health treatment.

Doering, who has tenure at the U of M, has been on administrative leave since the allegations against him became known. The university intimated that this leave will continue in a statement it sent to BMTN.

"The University is aware of the outcome of Professor Doering's sentencing hearing today. Unequivocally, the University denounces all forms of domestic violence, including the conduct Professor Doering admitted to in court," a spokeswoman said.

"Professor Doering is a tenured faculty member. The Tenure Code details his employment rights, rights which the University is required to consider. He is currently on administrative leave, where he will continue active research and academic writing that can be done off campus and without communicating with members of the campus community. He is not teaching classes or working on campus in any capacity."

According to the criminal charges against him, Minneapolis police officers arrived at his home in late December to respond to a "reported domestic assault-in-progress," and "could hear a male and female arguing inside."

Sign up: Subscribe to our BREAKING NEWS newsletters

They found Doering and a woman identified only as "M.R." She told them that Doering had "grabbed her by the hair and dragged her around the apartment," slapped and hit her, and choked her to the point where she couldn't breathe and thought she would lose consciousness.

She also "reported her belief that Defendant would eventually kill her."

Officers at the scene noted red marks on the woman's forehead, and "bruising in the shape of fingers" on the left side of her neck.

The victim told police she'd been assaulted by Doering "several times" in the past, and had pictures of her previous injuries to prove it. 

As well as his work at the U of M and as a climate change speaker, Doering was also featured in “The Changing Earth,” an Emmy-nominated documentary "about a 137-mile trek through the Arctic wilderness into Iceland." 

Next Up

Ambulance hospital emergency

Driver killed after crashing into parked semi-trailer

The crash occurred on the 5800 block of University Avenue Northeast.

Mike Zimmer

Vikings-Panthers: 5 things you can count on happening

The Vikings will look to open things up in Carolina.

Tanner Morgan/Gopher Football

Morgan's resurgence, Nebraska's miscues help Gophers hold on

The Gophers quarterback threw a pair of touchdowns in a 30-23 victory.

Tina Smith

Sen. Tina Smith warns Dems she may not vote for budget bill if climate plan dropped

This comes amid a White House effort to get its "Build Back Better" plan passed.

Pixabay - emergency room ambulance hospital

St. Paul man dies six days after crash on I-94

The Hennepin County Medical Examiner has identified the man as David Rodney Hardaway.

police lights squad car dark - Unsplash

Double murder in northeastern Minnesota, suspect kills himself after chase

The suspect died at the scene from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

chaska school fight

Anti-masker involved in school board meeting fight charged with assault

It happened last month at an Eastern Carver County Schools hearing.

Marcus Foligno

Marcus Foligno throws hands, scores game-winning goal in Wild's opener

The Wild forward scored with 7.2 seconds left to beat Anaheim.

Screen Shot 2021-10-15 at 10.01.55 PM

Large police presence at Emagine Willow Creek movie theater in Plymouth

There are few details at this stage as to what has happened.

Maple Grove Police Department

Maple Grove-based businessman convicted of fatally shooting wife

Wiseman owns properties in both Minnesota, Nevada and China.

betty and earls biscuits facebook

Jason Matheson's biscuit shop to briefly close ahead of relaunch

Betty & Earl's will shut down for two weeks before reopening under a new name.


U of M prof and noted climate change speaker charged with domestic abuse

Aaron Doering was featured in a Twin Cities PBS documentary last year.

U of M professor accused of sexually assaulting and stalking ex

One in every seven women has been stalked to the point of being scared for their safety, one group says.

Prosecutors drop sex assault, stalking charges against U of M professor

Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman said the case was dropped "in the interests of justice."

Screen Shot 2019-10-22 at 9.57.21 PM

Sexual assault under investigation near U of M campus

A timely warning has been issued to university students.

Gophers' Shannon Brooks arrested for alleged domestic assault

Brooks' girlfriend says he was in a fight with another male.

U of M prof punished for 'outrageous scheme' to swindle wife during divorce

The 57 year old lied about how much was in his retirement account.

Police: U of M student sexually assaulted in dorm room

The 19-year-old was assaulted in a student room at Bailey Hall.

Dequarn Bell

Hopkins man receives life sentence for vicious assault, holding woman captive

The 25-year-old pleaded guilty after three weeks of trial.