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UW-La Crosse student speaks out after sexual harassment complaint

Kaitlyn Riley

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UW-La Crosse student Caycee Bean submitted a sexual harassment complaint against an art professor in March of 2019.

Uw-La Crosse student Caycee bean said she hopes her harasser is permanently removed from the university’s faculty.

That was part of the statement she released about a week after her viral Facebook post about a UW-La Crosse professor’s sexual advances toward her.

Bean filed a report with the University in March of 2019 about the incident that happened years prior.

It stated that Joel Elgin, chair of the art department, offered her private drawing lessons. During one of those lessons, she said Elgin cornered her in a locked paper closet, asked her to remove some clothing and touched her.

When the Fall 2019 semester began, Bean said she received no update from the university about the incident. Once she contacted UW-L, she was told the lack of communication was an oversight. The university instructed Elgin not to have contact with Bean.

She said since little to no action was taken, and she felt the matter was closed, she shared her story on Facebook. Elgin was then placed on leave.

Bean believed, if not for the public interest in her story, he would not be under investigation. She challenged the university to change its policy for processing complaints.

Read Bean’s full statement below.

Kaitlyn Riley’s passion for communications started on her family’s dairy farm in Gays Mills, Wis. Wanting to share agriculture’s story, she studied strategic communications and broadcast journalism at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. In college, she held officer positions with the Association of Women in Agriculture and Badger Dairy Club while volunteering as a news reporter for the college radio station. She also founded the university’s first agricultural radio talk show, AgChat. In her professional career, Kaitlyn has worked in both radio, print and television news doing everything from covering local events to interviewing presidential candidates, and putting back on her barn boots to chat with farmers in the field. Today, Kaitlyn can be seen covering local stories that matter to you in the La Crosse area.

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