Court process moves forward for math lecturer
April 17, 2008 1:07 PM
An SF State lecturer accused of battery and assault on a University Police officer had his second court appearance this Tuesday, scheduling the first part of his trial process for later this Summer, according to the lecturer’s attorney and the incident’s police report.
The June hearing for David Sklar, a 61-year-old lecturer in the math department, will be to review the evidence of his incident last month, said his attorney, Brian Getz.
Sklar has pleaded not guilty to the six misdemeanor charges against him. Police originally arrested the instructor on felony assault charges that were later reduced to misdemeanors by the San Francisco District Attorney, and Sklar spent two days in jail following the incident, according to Getz and the DA’s office.
Officer Jarrod Yee spotted Sklar walking illegally along the 19th Avenue Muni tracks and jaywalking toward Hensill Hall during the early morning of March 20, according to a report that police did not originally provide to the [X]press.
Police indicated that the omission of Yee’s account from the report given last week was a clerical error, originally only providing the report of the first officer to assist Yee, Corporal Todd Settergren.
After Yee confronted the instructor about the two violations, Sklar explained he was running late that morning. When Yee “opened up [his] citation book,” Sklar “abruptly began screaming,” according to Yee’s account.
The instructor shouted “obscenities” and began walking away from Yee. The officer considered Sklar to be obstructing his investigation and called for backup, the report said.
As Yee took hold of Sklar to search him, the instructor “continued to struggle.” When Settergren arrived, he rushed towards the escalating conflict and “utilized [his] speed and weight to knock Sklar to the ground,” according to Settergren’s account.
With the lecturer face-down against the ground, police jabbed at his shoulder with an unextended baton in an effort to free his hands from under him for handcuffing. After the assistance of another campus officer, the three handcuffed Sklar, the report details.
A fourth officer assisted in binding Sklar’s ankles and holding him against the ground for about five minutes to “prevent further resistance,” according to the report.
“Scrapes and cuts” to officer Yee’s hands during the incident, an attempted kick toward an officer and “a substantial impact to [Yee’s] groin area” were all mentioned in the report.
Sklar will continue teaching his courses, “Ordinary Differential Equations I” and “Numerical Analysis,” through the semester, said mathematics department Chair David Bao.
SF State considers discipline toward professors after an arrest on a “case-by-case basis,” said university spokeswoman Ellen Griffin.
“I have 100 percent confidence behind Mr. Sklar’s integrity,” Bao, who would determine disciplinary action toward Sklar, said in an earlier interview with the [X]press. “There is no reason why he shouldn’t be able to continue teaching.”
Sklar faces six misdemeanor charges: three counts of resisting a police officer, one of battery on an officer, one of assault of an officer and one of “entering a noncommercial dwelling.”
In the print edition of [X]press, the name of the lecturer is incorrect. The correct name is David Sklar, not Brian Sklar. The online version is correct.
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