Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Demand for Extension of Time to File Appeal

Here is the email I just sent Judith Penchansky, requesting an extension of time to file the appeal from her wrongful suspension and again demanding that my student records be turned over. Clearly, from the information graciously provided to me by SMC student Jeff Higley, Penchansky is in clear violation of my rights and discriminating against the disabled at Santa Monica College. For reference, see the three previous blog postings as follows: Violation of My Due Process Rights at SMC, Judith Penchansky's and SMCPD's Abuse of Power and SMC's Smear Campaign and Extortion.

-- Des Manttari,
Phoenix Genesis

(c) 2006: Phoenix Genesis/MBS LP

------------------------ MY EMAIL TO JUDITH PENCHANSKY --------------------



MAY 30, 2006

Dear Ms. Penchansky,

Despite your email assurance on Thursday, May 25, 2006, that you would get back to me regarding the issues I addressed as contained in my May 25, 2006 email to you, you have not bothered to respond.

To summarize, I have repeatedly asked in writing for my student records, including those contained in your alleged disciplinary file (including any and all witness statements for or against me, any formal written charges against me, including but not limited to SMCPD reports and complaints filed in your office, etc.). To date, despite these requests and the laws that mandate prompt disclosure and access to these records, you have refused to provide them to me.

On March 25, 2006, despite my valid written request to provide these records along with a formal notice of suspension to Stephen Drury, my authorized representative (as set forth in proper written procedure), you refused to turn these documents over. Now, it is May 30, 2006 and you are expecting me to file an appeal by this Friday, June 2, 2006, yet you, Robert Adams, Marilyn Goodrich, or any other authorized representative of the school have not bothered to provide me with a formal written notice of suspension, either served via U.S. mail or delivered in person to me or an authorized representative.

I consider the very vague and overbroad suspension notice, indicating that I was suspended immediately for two years from Santa Monica College, that was sent to me via email on or about May 23, 2006 insufficient notice to effectuate a valid deprivation of my student and civil rights or a valid notice of suspension as this email, allegedly signed by Robert Adams, was not even sent from his email address, but from your office by your assistant, Marilyn Goodrich.

Despite the fact that on the morning of May 25, 2006, you refused to provide my authorized representative with a formal written notice of suspension (along with the accompanying documents and SMC Administrative Regulations as referenced), you did in fact upon request, provide SMC student Jeffery Higley with a copy of his formal written notice of your intent to proceed with a disciplinary meeting with him due to alleged violations of the SMC Student Code of Conduct. Why was a non-disabled SMC student provided with a copy of a disciplinary letter from you upon request and a disabled student such as myself repeatedly denied access to a very serious suspension letter?

Furthermore, because your office has refused to provide Mr. Higley with a courtesy copy of the SMCPD incident report upon which you are basing your patently false and overbroad allegations that Mr. Higley has been "argumentative, disruptive, and rude," and the SMCPD has now curiously stated that they would not provide this report for ten business days, you have granted him an extension of time to meet with you until he has a chance to both obtain and examine the charges in this report.

Why is a non-disabled student such as Mr. Higley being allowed an extension of time to prepare his legal defense in the SMC Administrative arena and a disabled student such as myself expected to provide a response to very vague, ambiguous, and overbroad charges (not to mention extremely manufactured "evidence" and patently false allegations) and unclear student conduct codes in less than the mandated 5 school days time frame for appeals [by your own admission, Friday was essentially a school holiday at SMC as there were no classes]? Additionally, why was Mr. Higley afforded an extension of time to meet with you and I was not when I asked for a very reasonable extension so that I could bring my attorney along?

Additionally, why was I, a disabled student, denied representation by an ADA compliance officer, why did you deny me right to counsel of my choice, why are my witnesses being coerced into signing your petition against me (circulated by Thomas J. Baker, one of my accusers), and why have I not been given a copy of this petition despite numerous written requests for such?

Additionally, why have I not been afforded a chance to see any explanation of recent trumped up allegations against me that now appear in your most recent email sent from Marilyn Goodrich and why have I not been provided many of the police reports you have referenced as grounds for your overly lengthy suspension? It is very clear that you have violated every single due process right I have in addition to violating the law governing non-discrimination and harassment of disabled students. SMC has a clear policy of equal educational rights for the disabled and inclusion, yet by denying me access to finish my ET 14 web design class at the Academy of Entertainment and Technology, you are violating my rights.

Clearly, you have not provided me these student records, disciplinary records, and SMCPD incident reports as you are busy still manufacturing your "evidence" against me to justify your wrongful suspension due to my failure to remove your name off my blog and to drop you as a defendant in my California Public Records Act case against the school, as was spelled out to me during the April 21, 2006 bad faith "settlement negotiations" between Dustin Curran, myself, and the school's two legal representatives, Joshua Morrison and Robert Sammis.

Additionally, I find it curious that both Mr. Higley and I were both given disciplinary letters by you within a one day time frame (me via email and he via personal delivery by you), especially since Mr. Higley was exercising his rights to associated with a disabled students such as myself and went out of his way to record both evidence of police misconduct by the SMCPD (of which I have repeatedly alleged) and to videotape my speech to the SMC Board of Trustees on or about April 10, 2006. As you are well aware, during my public commentary to the Board, I asked that the hate crimes and hate speech against the disabled cease at SMC and that we were to no longer be retaliated against my anyone at SMC, including your office.

Additionally, both Mr. Higley and I have published extensively on our respective off-campus blogs, all within our First Amendment rights to Free Speech, yet the school, through you, is attempting to wrongly deprive us of these very same liberties afforded by the Constitution. Given the fact that Mr. Sammis had indicated he, and the school, did not wish to proceed with the suspension if I remove names of individuals (your name especially mentioned) off my blog and drop my CPRA lawsuit for vital public records (of which you are a named defendant), it is clear that this suspension appeal I am being forced to attend is in bad faith and done for the purpose of discrimination, retaliation, and harassment and in violation of my due process rights. Since Mr. Higley also writes on his blog, and has defended my blog, it is clear that any action you have taken, and intend to take against Mr. Higley, is also in bad faith.

Not only are you interfering with my right to pursue my education at SMC by your refusal to allow me to attend class for the remainder of the semester, and for your failure to provide me a viable alternative to completing my ET 14 web design course, you are excluding me from coming onto campus without police escort for the purpose of secluding me from any and all witnesses that I could obtain in my defense of your wrongful charges against me. This is clear violation, once again, of my rights to due process and other statutory law.

Additionally, to further violate my rights and to prevent me from continuing in my education, you have found me guilty before being proven innocent as is evident by your repeated unjustified "disciplinary" enrollment holds placed on my student records. If I am afforded a due process hearing, then I should be able to enroll in classes for the summer and fall semesters 2006.

By copy of this email, I am demanding that the enrollment hold placed by you on my student records be removed, that I be provided with the complete student files, including disciplinary files maintained by your office and the SMCPD incident reports upon which you base your allegations, the petition maintained in your office created by both you and Mr. Baker, the names of any and all individuals along with their respective titles who will sit on the Appeals Committee, and a formal written notice of suspension along with the appropriate AR documentation referenced by you.

Additionally, due to the denial of my student records, the lack of formal valid written notice of suspension (signed by Robert Adams), the denial of SMCPD incident reports, the lack of clear explanation of each and every charge against me and precisely which Code of Student Conduct I have violated by each allegation, the denial of an ADA compliance officer to assist me, your denial of my access to campus (which makes it more difficult to me to contact potential witnesses) and the difficulties caused by my disability, I am demanding a reasonable extension of time to file my Appeal from Suspension until you have provided me ample time to obtain and review all these records and to follow due process and to answer my very valid questions.

Absent a valid written notice of time for an extension to file my Appeal from Suspension, with a precise date with enough notice for me to give an attorney of my choice, and by virtue of Mr. Sammis' bad faith statements on or about April 21, 2006, and your previous written indications that you refused to have a written dialogue with me, I will assume that you have no interest in complying with the law and that I have been not been afforded ample time and ability to effectively respond favorably in my written appeal or will be allowed a fair and impartial hearing with the SMC Appeals Committee.

I look forward to your prompt response to the foregoing.

Very Truly Yours,

Des Manttari /s/
cc: U.S. Department of Education

Feel free to link or print this; just include the SAVE SMC URL: http://savesmc.blogspot.com/

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