Former Instructor accused of Sexually Harassing Students

Michigan – A sexual harassment lawsuit was filed in July 2016 in Bay County Circuit Court alleging that an instructor at Delta College sexually harassed two students, MaCayla Jablonski and Emily Mason. The sexual harassment lawsuit was filed against Delta College and the instructor, Jonathan Brent Fonville.

In January 2015, both students enrolled in Fonville’s introduction to psychology class. The sexual harassment lawsuit explained that the students were assigned to do a paper regarding their “personal insecurities and mental disorders” during the course. The following April, the instructor allegedly reached out to the students on social media.

According to Jablonski, Fonville also showed up at her job. After he made an appearance at her job, the students alleged that Fonville started communicating with them via text message. The sexual harassment lawsuit claims Fonville sent “overtly sexual and flirtatious text messages.” Fonville’s actions were definitely inappropriate for an employee and educational instructor at Delta College. The accused instructor should’ve aided the students in school and with their futures as opposed to engaging in sexual harassment.

Throughout the text messages the students alleged Fonville sent, they claimed he inquired about their personal dating lives. As the year progressed, the instructor became more open with his sexual harassment. The female students started to receive various web links leading to sexual websites displaying images of male private parts, according to the sexual harassment lawsuit.

Jablonski revealed that she received several “sexual messages” on a popular social media site, Tumblr, that she genuinely suspects Fonville sent her. In addition to sexually harassing the students, the plaintiffs allege that Fonville attempted to sexually harass their social studies course instructor. After tolerating consistent sexual harassment from Fonville for months, the students filed an official sexual harassment report with the school officials. They also informed the dean of faculty and Delta’s Title IX Equity Officer about Fonville’s wrongdoings.

The students alleged Delta College “took inadequate measures to stop” Fonville from sexually harassing them. Currently, the plaintiffs are seeking $25,000 in monetary damages for the emotional distress they experienced after their instructor disturbed their academic environment with hostility. The students claimed they were subjected to an “offensive sex-based educational environment.” The sexual harassment lawsuit alleged that Delta College violated Michigan’s Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act of 1976, which prohibits discrimination in education and on the basis of sex amongst several protected classes.

In a statement, the defense attorney denied, “either Plaintiff has been discriminated against on the basis of their sex in the full utilization of benefits, services, activities or programs offered by the College.” All of these activities took place in October along with a sexual harassment investigation into the sexual harassment claims. The results of the sexual harassment investigation disclosed that the sexual messages were a mutual activity that both parties engaged in.

The findings claim the sexual harassment via text messages was not unwanted or unwelcome, post the psychology course. According to the investigation’s response, Fonville’s appearance at Jablonski’s job was merely a coincidence considering Fonville was allegedly unaware that the plaintiff was employed there.

According to the investigation report by Delta’s Title IX coordinator, the previous investigation’s findings did not match. Delta College revealed that Emily and MaCayla were great individuals with excellent credibility whereas Fonville maintained a different caliber and lower level of credibility. The Title IX investigation discovered that sexual harassment was present in the academic facility.

The plaintiffs’ sexual harassment attorney is determined to prove Fonville’s sexual harassment was unwanted by the plaintiffs. The sexual harassment lawsuit added, “Professors and teachers must understand affairs with students and sexual advances on students are just completely inappropriate.” The defense attorney alleged Fonville’s sexual misconduct did not interfere with the plaintiffs’ academics since the sexual harassment took place “outside of the time he was their instructor.”
Sexual harassment is a worldwide unwanted issue that does not belong in the halls of Delta College according to the federal law Title IX. Title IX protects individuals in educational environments receiving federal funding from discrimination based on sex. Fonville is no longer employed at Delta College. He also declined making a comment regarding the pending litigation.

Sexual Harassment Lawyer

Have you ever experienced sexual harassment at work in New York City, Miami, New Jersey, or Philadelphia? If so, contact a sexual harassment lawyer at the Derek Smith Law Group, PLLC in New York City, Miami, New Jersey, or Philadelphia for legal guidance with your sexual harassment case. Our sexual harassment lawyers are adept, knowledgeable about the employment laws that protect employees from workplace sexual harassment, and ready to provide stellar legal representation throughout your sexual harassment case.