UAA police: Former professor accused of sexual misconduct banned from university property, events
A former professor accused of decades-long sexual misconduct is banned from all University of Alaska property, according to an alert university police sent to students Monday evening.
Dr. David Yesner is a former University of Alaska Anchorage anthropology professor whose ties to the UAA date back to 1975. He’s also the subject of a recent Title IX investigation into sexual discrimination and sexual harassment that found accusations against him from nine women to be credible.
The report from investigators illuminates an environment in which Yesner had no fear of getting caught, while the women around him formed a network, sharing "war stories" to warn others about a predator. Allegations from the women include inappropriate staring and touching, verbal harassment and assault.
“Dr. David Yesner has been banned and trespassed from all property owned, controlled, or used by the University of Alaska, including but not limited to UAA campuses,” Monday’s email to students read. “If you see him or become aware of his presence in any such location please inform the UA person in charge of that location and contact the UAA Police Department at 907-786-1120 or other law enforcement personnel without delay. UA location managers should inform Dr. Yesner that police have been contacted and direct him to leave the premises.”
Additionally, Yesner is no longer welcome at events with any affiliation to UA, whether on public or private property, according to the email.
The alert represents the university’s first public acknowledgement of consequences for Yesner.
When KTVA published its initial story on the report, a UAA spokesperson declined to provide interviews with school officials, but answered some questions through email. They also declined to share information about potential consequences for Yesner or those who mishandled complaints about him at the time, citing legal limitations.
According to the investigative report, Yesner announced his retirement in April 2017, and applied for professor emeritus status, an honor he was expected to receive publicly during the commencement ceremony that December. Days away from the ceremony, complaints against Yesner rushed in, requesting an investigation before he was granted recognition and a continued presence on UAA's campus.
The report said Yesner was ultimately denied emeritus status. His photo and biography have been removed from UAA's website, which continues to include other past anthropology professors.
Copyright 2019 KTVA. All rights reserved.
RELATED NEWS COVERAGE: