WARRENSBURG, Mo. — A freshman at the University of Central Missouri in Warrensburg said he was given a letter of discipline after reporting he was the victim of anti-gay harassment. 18-year-old Alex Worthley of Sedalia said his dormitory roommate threatened him with a knife because the other student didn’t like having a gay roommate.
“He was like, ‘I do have a knife and I’ll use it if I have to,’” said Worthley.
Worthley told FOX 4 that at one point he asked the roommate to turn down his music.
“And that’s when he repeated that and he was like ‘I don’t like gay people,’” Worthley said.
Worthley said he reported the threat to the Office of Student Housing. An investigator agreed to put the two students in separate dorm rooms, but Worthley said he was shocked when he received a letter of discipline just like his accuser.
“Made it feel like because I’m gay that it was my fault that those threats were made,” said Worthley.
FOX 4 obtained a copy of the discipline letter Worthley received which reads in part: “There seems to be a strong possibility that some of your own actions and comments were part of the reason this situation escalated from jesting to threatening.”
“It never said what I specifically did wrong to make him say these things,” complained Worthley.
UCM spokesman Jeff Murphy provided FOX 4 with a statement that says:
“The university cannot comment on specific details regarding a conflict between students, but UCM takes seriously the process in handling such situations and in addressing student concerns, including communication procedures with those involved. We are confident in our existing procedures, but will review this matter, with a goal to make certain there is no misunderstanding about the roles everyone at the university plays in ensuring a positive, supportive campus environment.”
Worthley said UCM should’ve never paired the two students in the same dorm room to begin with because his former roommate told university officials he didn’t want a gay roommate.
“That wouldv’e just solved the whole thing, I wouldn’t have had to have been with him,” said Worthley. But UCM Spokesman Jeff Murphy offered FOX 4 a separate statement on that issue which reads:
“Consistent with university policy, the Office of Student Housing does not make room assignments or reassignments based upon sexual orientation, race or other university protected status.”
Worthley, who now has a dorm room to himself, has filed an appeal with the university’s Office of Student Housing, asking that his letter of discipline be removed from his student file.