(12:30 p.m. Tuesday)
The hearing for the Randy Bachmeier vs. Montana State University-Northern sexual harassment complaint began 9 a.m. Tuesday morning.
The session began with Bachmeier’s attorney, John Heenan, questioning the first witness, Dean of the College of Education, Arts and Sciences and Nursing Christine Shearer-Cremean. During her questioning, Shearer-Cremean said that former MSU-Northern Provost Rosalyn Templeton, who Bachmeier filed the complaint against, made the work environment “unbearable” at the university, especially after Bachmeier filed the complaint.
Chair of the College of Technical Sciences Larry Strizich testified that he saw Templeton touching Bachmeier and other subordinates on numerous occasions and that some of the occasions, Templeton was “borderline fondling” university employees.
Strizich and Shearer-Cremean said they witnessed an occasion at MSU-Northern Chancellor James Limbaugh’s residence where Templeton touched Bachmeier while he stood in a food line.
Shearer-Cremean said it was the only occasion she saw Templeton touch Bachmeier and Strizich said it was one of many he witnessed.
In Bachmeier’s deposition, he states that this occasion was the last time Templeton touched him and that she stopped the two-and-a-half-year habit after he filed the sexual harassment complaint against her with the Montana Human Relations Bureau.
The hearing is now on lunch break on will continue at 1 p.m. The hearing is expected to end some time Thursday.
(Updates later. Full story in Wednesday's Havre Daily News.)