The staff of the Central Connecticut State University student-run newspaper feels their Freedom of Speech rights were violated after 150 copies of their paper, “The Recorder” were taken from the student center.
Nicholas Proch, editor of The Recorder, said he noticed that three racks in the Student Center where the newspaper is usually kept were empty on Thursday.
Proch asked the activities directors at the center if he could file a police report, thinking that a student was just pulling a prank and that he could get the papers back.
After filing the report on Thursday, Proch says he was informed on Friday that the newspapers were stolen by CCSU Men’s Head Soccer Coach Shaun Green, who was upset about a story the paper ran about the men’s soccer team.
Green said he had no comment about the incident.
The CCSU police department told NBC Connecticut News that the report was not available over the weekend and that all requests must go through Associate Vice President Mark McLaughlin.
Proch said the article was about the team’s disqualification from next year’s postseason due to NCAA academic sanctions.
“I was shocked that it was any type of administrator,” said Proch. “I was thinking of who it could be and I just couldn’t put my thumb on it. The soccer story that we ran was very similar to the press release. It wasn’t like we broke any news that they didn’t want anyone to know about. They already released it.”
Proch reported in The Recorder that Green contacted the campus police and told them that he took the papers and threw them away. The Recorder also reports that he apologized to the police department and stated that he would not take any more papers.
Proch, who is graduating next week, said that he and the staff at The Recorder have not yet decided how they will move forward from the incident.
“We aren’t sure what we are going to do right now,” Proch said. “To me, as the editor and someone who works really hard, it’s a really big slap in the face. And he didn’t apologize to us, he apologized to the police. It really is Freedom of Speech issue.”
The Recorder first reported this story on Thursday.