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Federal Complaint - Fuqua School of Business
 

Federal Complaint - Fuqua School of Business

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Federal Complaint - Fuqua School of Business

Federal Complaint - Fuqua School of Business

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    Federal Complaint - Fuqua School of Business Federal Complaint - Fuqua School of Business Document Transcript

    • 1. Vamsidhar Vurimindi 1782 Frankford Ave, Unit 1, Philadelphia, PA 19125 Plaintiff, Vs. 1. Barns Barton 6219 Lymbar Dr. Houston, TX 77096, USA 2. Robert Ball 3227 Harris Mill LN, Charlotte, NC 28262 3. Nathaniel Hawkins 5123 White Horse Dr. Greensboro, NC 4. Robert Ross 117 Homegate Circle, Apex, NC 27502 5. Peter Walton 1299 Sandy Bottom Drive, NW Concord, NC 28027 6. Dan Paschke 4420 Overglen Ave, Wake Forest, NC 27587, USA 7. Brooke Balcom 3355 Greenfield Lane, Cincinnati, OH 4524 8. Moira Ringo 7730 Cape Charles Dr, Raleigh, NC 27617 9. Shana Keating 3028 Sawyers Mill Drive, Apex, NC 27539 10. Anna Gonowon 101 Glenlake Commons, Decatur, GA 30030 Defendants ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) ) United States District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina Complaint for Libel Complaint for Slander Complaint for Civil Conspiracy Complaint for Negligent Infliction of Emotional Distress Complaint for Intentional Infliction of Emotional Distress Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 1 of 125
    • Page - 2 - of 125 COMPLAINT (I) JURISDICTION: Diversity of Citizenship, 28 U.S.C. § 1332 (II) THE PARTIES: A. PLAINTIFF: 01. Plaintiff Vamsidhar Vurimindi is a resident of 1782 Frankford Ave, Unit # 1, Philadelphia, PA 19125. Hereafter Plaintiff Vamsidhar Vurimindi referred as Plaintiff. B. DEFENDANTS: 02. Defendant Barnes Barton, is a resident of 6219 Lymbar Dr. Houston, TX 77096, USA 03. Defendant Robert Ball, is a resident of 3227 Harris Mill LN, Charlotte, NC 28262 04. Defendant Nathaniel Hawkins, is a resident of 5123 White Horse Dr. Greensboro, NC 27410 USA 05. Defendant Robert Ross is a resident of 117 Homegate Circle, Apex, NC 27502. 06. Defendant Peter Walton is a resident of 1299 Sandy Bottom Drive, NW Concord, NC 28027. 07. Defendant Dan Paschke, 4420 Overglen Ave, Wake Forest, NC 27587, USA 08. Defendant Brooke Balcom, is a resident of 3355 Greenfield Lane, Cincinnati, OH 45245, USA 09. Defendant Moira Ringo is a resident of 7730 Cape Charles Dr, Raleigh, NC 27617. 10. Defendant Shana Keating is a resident of 3028 Sawyers Mill Drive, Apex, NC 27539. 11. Defendant Anna Gonowon is a resident of 101 Glenlake Commons, Decatur, GA 30030 (III) STATEMENT OF CLAIM: 12. In February 2008, prior to applying for an admission into Weekend Executive MBA program (“WEMBA”), Plaintiff had a meeting with Duke’ Assistant Director for Admissions in Duke Campus. 13. At that time, Plaintiff bargained for business writing and real estate finance courses; and assist Plaintiff to prepare a detailed business plan to develop vacant lots owned by City of Philadelphia, which are scattered in the city. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 2 of 125
    • Page - 3 - of 125 14. In response, Duke’ Assistant Director for Admissions made a specific promise to Plaintiff that Duke will offer business writing and real estate finance courses; and assist Plaintiff to prepare a detailed business plan to develop vacant lots owned by City of Philadelphia, through its Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation (CEI) or Center for the Advancement of Social Entrepreneurship (CASE). 15. After, Duke’ Assistant Director for Admissions made specific promises, Plaintiff without ambiguity paraphrased those specific promises in writing as to why Plaintiff wanted to earn an MBA and what curriculum Plaintiff is expecting that Duke must offer and submitted along with his admission application. 16. After that, a high level Duke’ Admissions committee reviewed Plaintiff’ application along with Plaintiff’ written statements and accepted Plaintiff’ application and immediately thereafter, Plaintiff paid the tuition fee. 17. Duke offered WEMBA course over a span of 19 months between March 2008 and November 2009, in six terms. 18. Plaintiff deliberately chooses a WEMBA program over online format is to have one-on-one in-person direct contact with the student body, because face-to-face meetings are essential to cultivate new relationships in many business interactions. 19. Plaintiff self financed WEMBA program cost paid all expenses on his own, but not limited to the school tuition fee, travel expenses and time to attend the classes. 20. WEMBA program started with one (1) week on-campus orientation program and subsequent classes are held on alternating weekends on Fridays and Saturdays. 21. Duke provided accommodation on Friday nights and at an extra cost Duke provided accommodation on Thursday nights. 22. Plaintiff stayed at the R. David Thomas Center on Thursday and Friday nights, where Duke provided accommodation to WEMBA students. 23. In between the weekend classes, to continue the collaborative interaction between the students and professors, Duke provided software application l called “CentraOne”, having capabilities for live interaction with professors and other students. Many WEMBA students extensively used CentraOne to interact with other students as well as with Professors. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 3 of 125
    • Page - 4 - of 125 24. In March 2008, Duke commenced WEMBA class of 2009 program with one (1) week orientation session. 25. In March 2008, on the 1st day of the orientation session, Defendant Moira Ringo told to many of the Plaintiff’ classmates that, Plaintiff lacks academic integrity and had a history of academic dishonesty; and indulged in adultery. 26. In March 2008, on the 2nd day of the orientation session during a breakfast at R. David Thomas Center, Defendant Moira Ringo gathered Plaintiff’ classmates Jason Link and David Mitchell around Plaintiff and Defendant Moira Ringo prodded Jason Link to start a pre- meditated conversation in a mocking fashion. At that time, Jason Link looking towards Plaintiff and said that, “it appears that cheaters are in the class”. At that time, immediately Plaintiff asked Jason Link, “What do you mean by that?” At that time Jason Link response was dismissive. 27. Nevertheless, Plaintiff attempted to pursue Jason Link for an explanation, but at that time, Duke Administrators rushed Plaintiff and other WEMBA students to get into a bus to go to Triangle Training Center for team building exercises, which are part of the orientation session and Plaintiff, Defendant Moira Ringo and Jason Link departed. 28. Plaintiff and David Mitchell happen to belongs to a team, Plaintiff stayed with David Mitchell and get into the bus. For the first few minutes of the bus travel, Plaintiff and David Mitchell had decent conversation and after that, suddenly David Mitchell suggested to Plaintiff to read a book about, “how to lie without getting caught by the lie detector”. Immediately, Plaintiff asked David Mitchell, “Why do you think that I should read that book?” In response, David Mitchell told to Plaintiff, that “it may be helpful for you to continue in the program”. At that time, Plaintiff asked David Mitchell, “Why do you think that I am lying?” At that time, David Mitchell response was vague and dismissive. 29. Jason Link and David Mitchell both in their responses were evasive and vague to Plaintiff and this lead Plaintiff to confusion over the matter at hand, as well as made the Plaintiff disinclined to pursue further conversations on the topic with Defendant Moira Ringo and as well as with both Jason Link and David Mitchell. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 4 of 125
    • Page - 5 - of 125 30. Plaintiff believes that Defendant Moira Ringo resorted to psychological manipulation to gain power and control over Plaintiff, by throwing Plaintiff on the defensive by using subtle, indirect, or implied threats. 31. Because, Defendant Moira Ringo’ false accusations attributing to Plaintiff are almost impossible to be seen as aggressive on the surface, and visibly at the unconscious level, Plaintiff is confused over the matter at hand, Jason Link and David Mitchell both believed Defendant Moira Ringo’ false accusations attributing to Plaintiff, and further blamed, condemned, defamed, denigrated, denounced, disparaged, humiliated, maligned, pilloried, sullied, tarnished Plaintiff’ reputation among the Plaintiff’ classmates by attributing Plaintiff lacks academic integrity and had a history of academic dishonesty; and indulged in adultery. 32. Defendants1 along with other Plaintiff’ classmates2 haunted and jog the Plaintiff’ memory about Defendant Moira Ringo’ statements about Plaintiff’ lacking academic integrity and had a history of academic dishonesty; and indulged in adultery and covertly and overtly made several preparatory acts to compel Duke to expel Plaintiff throughout the WEMBA program by schemingly using Duke’ professors, Duke’ policies and procedures. 33. Within a week, by the end of the orientation session, along with other Defendants and Plaintiff’ classmates, Defendant Moira Ringo organized a smear campaign against Plaintiff by propagating Plaintiff’ lacking academic integrity and had a history of academic dishonesty; and indulged in adultery and not as a person was properly grounded with a decent set of values and turned Duke Campus into a hostile environment to Plaintiff. 34. Defendant Moira Ringo along with other Plaintiff’ classmates told to Professor Jill Stowe that Plaintiff’ lacking academic integrity and had a history of academic dishonesty; and indulged in adultery. 1 Barnes Barton, Robert Ball, Nathaniel Hawkins, Robert Ross, Peter Walton, Dan Paschke, Brooke Balcom, Moira Ringo and Shana Keating. 2 Jason Link, Kristofer Singleton, David Mitchell, Douglas Bashar, Johnny Williams, John Dohnal, Alissandro Castillo, Sudheer Dharanikota, Sunil Balasaheb Patil, Amit Khare, Eugene White, Rajiv Prasad Kolagani, Pratibhash Chattopadhyay, Jennifer Erickson, Seth Gillespie, Gregory Valentine, Pradeep Rajagopal, Rajiv Patnaik, Lei Zhu, John Espey, Sanjay Mishra, Sankar Ramesh, Kevin Giusti, and Sreedhar Manjigani Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 5 of 125
    • Page - 6 - of 125 35. Defendants smear campaign was so intense, powerful, persuasory, actuating, convincing, and provocative enough to sway the learned professors felt that Plaintiff’ lacking academic integrity and had a history of academic dishonesty; and indulged in adultery, so Plaintiff shouldn’t be allowed to continue in the WEMBA program. 36. Plaintiff was agitated and discomposed with the Defendants intense smear campaign against Plaintiff, on 13th March 2008, at 8:00 AM attended his first class at Duke. 37. Fortunately or unfortunately, Professor Jill Stowe’ Probability and Statistics course is the first class. 38. As soon as class started Professor Jill Stowe told to the class that she is using a randomization tool to pick a student and ask a question from the class reading material. 39. Immediately Professor Jill Stowe called on Plaintiff and asked a question from the class reading material and Plaintiff answered her question. Nevertheless, Professor Jill Stowe was predetermined to prove that Defendants claim that, Plaintiff came to Duke, by indulging through academic dishonesty and not by his intelligence and continue to ask ancillary questions from outside of the class reading material to a point where, Plaintiff could not answer her question. 40. At a point in time, when Plaintiff could not answer Professor Jill Stowe’ question from outside of the class reading material, Plaintiff’ classmates Jason Link, Rajiv Prasad Kolagani, David Mitchell, Sunil Balasaheb, and Sanjay Mishra conveyed to other students with their facial and hand gestures, “see we told you”, implying that Plaintiff came to Duke, by indulging through academic dishonesty and not by his intelligence. 41. Surprisingly, next day on 14th March 2008, Professor Jill Stowe told to the class that her randomizing tool is not working; hence she will call the students directly. 42. Plaintiff believe that Professor Jill Stowe told to the class that she is using a randomization tool to pick the students, but in reality there is no true functioning randomization tool at her disposal to select the students. 43. In fact and indeed, Professor Jill Stowe used the name of the randomization tool as a smoke screen to purposefully pick Plaintiff as soon first class was started, because she is Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 6 of 125
    • Page - 7 - of 125 predetermined to prove that Defendants claim that, Plaintiff came to Duke, by indulging through academic dishonesty and not by his intelligence. 44. On 14th March 2008, while Plaintiff is sitting in the Managerial Effectiveness class, Plaintiff classmate Rajiv Patnaik leaned towards Plaintiff and said that, “they came to know about you”. At that time, Plaintiff asked Rajiv Patnaik we can talk about this during class break. Right after that, during class break Plaintiff asked Rajiv Patnaik, “What are you saying during the class?” At that time, Rajiv Patnaik’ response was dismissive and abruptly ended his conversation with Plaintiff. 45. On 29th March 2008, sometime during afternoon class session break, Plaintiff classmate Rajiv Prasad Kolagani approached Plaintiff and said that, “they came to know about you”. In response, Plaintiff told to Rajiv Prasad Kolagani that, “during the last class session, Rajiv Patnaik also told to me the same thing and when asked to explain, he abruptly ended the conversation and can you please explain me?”. At that time, Rajiv Prasad Kolagani response was dismissive and ended the conversation with the Plaintiff abruptly. 46. Plaintiff believes that Defendant Moira Ringo’ false accusations attributing to Plaintiff lead Rajiv Patnaik and Rajiv Prasad Kolagani to further vilify Plaintiff, by putting Plaintiff on the defensive while masking their aggressive intention of gain power and control over Plaintiff through subtle, indirect and implied threats. 47. On 10th April 2008, Plaintiff’ classmates Tina Hong, Sanjay Mishra, Sreeedhar Manjigani3 , John Dohnal and Seth Gillespie invited Plaintiff to join then for casual conversations. At that time, John Dohnal enquired Plaintiff’ marital status and Plaintiff told to John Dohnal that he is married. 48. Then, immediately John Dohnal asked, “What is your wife do for living?” In response Plaintiff told to John Dohnal that, “My wife is a COO of a fast growing life sciences company in Philadelphia region”. Then, John Dohnal asked, “what is the annual sales volume of your 3 Sridhar Manjigani and Plaintiff belongs to same hometown back home in India; Sridhar Manjigani’ father is an acquaintance to Plaintiff’ father. Plaintiff and Sridhar Manjigani didn’t attend together the same school or college back home in India. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 7 of 125
    • Page - 8 - of 125 wife’ company?”. Then Plaintiff told to John Dohnal that, “her company is a private company and the information about the company is revealed only on a need to know basis. If you have any business proposal, I am happy to give my wife’ contact information, so that you can find directly from her”. 49. Immediately, John Dohnal and Sanjay Mishra asked Plaintiff, “What is that you really do for living?”. In response, Plaintiff told, “I am working as a consultant at Wyeth Pharmaceuticals and started a real estate development company and am pursuing few construction projects in Philadelphia”. 50. Immediately, John Dohnal asked Plaintiff, “What do you do at Wyeth”. Then Plaintiff explained his nature of work. At that time, John Dohnal in a mocking fashion way asked Plaintiff about his ongoing issue with Accenture and Wyeth employees at his work. 51. Plaintiff paused 15 seconds of silence to understand the mockery about Plaintiff’ work situation at Wyeth Pharmaceuticals, and while Plaintiff was pausing, Seth Gillespie told to Tina Hong, Sanjay Mishra, Sridhar Manjigani and John Dohnal that “he is having rough time at Wyeth Pharmaceuticals, and he has been demoted, because he is messing with Accenture”. 52. Immediately, Plaintiff responded to Seth Gillespie that, “I am not messing with Accenture at Wyeth, but it is true that my initial contract has been cancelled and that contract has been awarded to Accenture”. At that time, Seth Gillespie accused Plaintiff that “he is lying and that is why his lips are trembling”. 53. Then, Plaintiff realized that Tina Hong, Sanjay Mishra, Sridhar Manjigani, John Dohnal and Seth Gillespie are somehow in direct contact with Plaintiff’ managers at Wyeth Pharmaceuticals. 54. Plaintiff realized that Defendant Moira Ringo’ statements about Plaintiff lacking academic integrity and having history of academic dishonesty; and alleged adultery along with Plaintiff’ managers intimidation, Defendants and Plaintiffs’ classmates are doubting Plaintiff’ academic integrity and marital honesty and not knowing as to how educate Tina Hong, Sanjay Mishra, Sridhar Manjigani, John Dohnal and Seth Gillespie, Plaintiff left them and went back to his room. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 8 of 125
    • Page - 9 - of 125 55. On 11th April 2008, during morning breakfast at R. David Thomas Center, Plaintiff, Aparna Batra and Sreedhar Manjigani are taking breakfast at one table. At that time, while Sreedhar Manjigani prodding Aparna Batra with facial suggestions, Aparna Batra told to Sreedhar Manjigani that , “Vamsidhar eyes are telling the story that he is guilty”. 56. At that time, Plaintiff asked Sreedhar Manjigani, “what did you tell her and what is she talking?” Right after that, Sreedhar Manjigani quickly left the table and when Plaintiff attempted to ask the same question, Sreedhar Manjigani’ answer was vague, abrupt and dismissive. 57. On 11th April 2008, sometime after the afternoon class session, while Plaintiff is walking back to his room, Tina Hong, Sanjay Mishra, and Sreedhar Manjigani called Plaintiff to join them for a conversation and Plaintiff reluctantly joined them. 58. At that time, Sanjay Mishra asked Plaintiff to tell about Plaintiff’ family history and Plaintiff’ work before migrating to United States. At that time, Plaintiff felt uncomfortable and attempted to divert the conversation. Nevertheless, Sanjay Mishra insisted to respond to his question. At that time, Plaintiff was annoyed by Sanjay Mishra’ persistence and told them Plaintiff don’t want to talk about that issue. 59. At that time, Sanjay Mishra looked at Plaintiff and said that that “why are you getting uneasy, it seems that you are trying to hide something”. At that time, Plaintiff left the group and went back to his room. 60. Plaintiff believe that Defendant Moira Ringo’ statements about Plaintiff lacking academic integrity and having history of academic dishonesty; and alleged adultery lead the Plaintiff’ classmates to enquire into Plaintiff’ private life. 61. On 11th April 2008, in the evening Duke organized a networking opportunity with Global Executive MBA students and Plaintiff participated in this event. At that time, Sarah Rosen Shah, Duke’ Weekend Executive MBA Admissions Counselor also present in that event. 62. On 11th April 2008, while Plaintiff standing along with several other classmates, Sarah Rosen Shah approached Plaintiff and asked Plaintiff as “how the things are at Wharton and what happened to your admission at Wharton”. Then Plaintiff replied as “Wharton denied the admission”. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 9 of 125
    • Page - 10 - of 125 63. Immediately, Sarah Rosen Shah responded back to Plaintiff that, “it seems that they came know that you don’t have what you claim that you have”. Then Plaintiff asked Sarah Rosen Shah as “what do you mean by that?” However, Sarah Rosen Shah response was vague and abrupt. 64. Plaintiff believe that Defendant Moira Ringo’ statements about Plaintiff lacking academic integrity and having history of academic dishonesty; and alleged adultery lead Sarah Rosen Shah to doubtful about Plaintiff’ integrity and that doubt leads Sarah Rosen Shah to imaginary speculation. 65. After that, Sarah Rosen Shah made hand and facial gestures to Plaintiff’ classmates, while several attendees are watching them by conveying a meaning that not to talk to Plaintiff, and as result Plaintiff couldn’t able to network with the participants. 66. On 11th April 2008, evening after dinner, Tina Hong gathered Sanjay Mishra, Sreedhar Manjigani, Sankar Ramesh, Pratibhash Chattopadhyay and Eugene White at the Bar at R. David Thomas Center. 67. While Plaintiff having dinner at R. David Thomas Center, Pratibhash Chattopadhyay approached Plaintiff and asked “What are you doing after dinner?” Plaintiff responded to him that “due to the course work load, I didn’t have time respond to my general contractor questions, so, I want to respond to his questions tonight”. At that time, Pratibhash Chattopadhyay suggested the Plaintiff, just come to the bar for few minutes to meet other classmates. 68. After his dinner, Plaintiff went to the bar at R. David Thomas Center and as soon, Plaintiff go to the bar, Sanjay Mishra asked other students to stand in front of the Plaintiff. As soon, Plaintiff classmates stand in front of Plaintiff, Sanjay Mishra said to the Plaintiff, “you are standing in the line behind us and you will be waiting in the line behind us”. At that time, Plaintiff asked Sanjay Mishra, “What is this all about?” At that time, Sanjay Mishra, responded to the Plaintiff that, “don’t you understand? You are supposed to be the last person in the queue”. 69. Plaintiff believe that Defendant Moira Ringo’ statements about Plaintiff lacking academic integrity and having history of academic dishonesty lead his classmates believe that Plaintiff Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 10 of 125
    • Page - 11 - of 125 came to Duke, by indulging through academic dishonesty and not by his intelligence, they are ranking Plaintiff with lowest possible rank. 70. Immediately, next day, on 12th April 2008, Plaintiff contacted Duke Administration and explained the harassment that he is subjected by his classmates and demanded to enforce Duke’ anti-harassment policies, before the defendants permanently and irrevocably damage Plaintiff’ image and reputation in the student community. 71. After few days, Duke Administration without enforcing Duke’ anti-harassment policies to restrain students from harassing Plaintiff, simply recommended some books4 to read as to how to deal with burden of being an object of ridicule and harassment. 72. While, defendants continue to damage Plaintiff’ image and reputation in the student community, as per Duke specific promise, Plaintiff enquired Duke for Business Writing courses; In response, Duke Administration told to Plaintiff, that Duke don’t offer Business Writing Course for WEMBA students and suggested to read some books from Duke library. 73. At the same time, as per Duke’ specific promise, Plaintiff asked Duke Administration and Duke’ CEI and CASE to assist Plaintiff in the preparation of business plan to develop vacant lots owned by City of Philadelphia. 74. None from Duke’ CEI and CASE respond to Plaintiff and in April 2008 Duke Administration told to Plaintiff that Duke will offer some assistance if Plaintiff enrolled into entrepreneurial courses in the Term 5 and 6. 75. Nevertheless, in May 2008, Duke Administration categorically told to Plaintiff that they don’t offer any assistance to Plaintiff to prepare a business plan to develop vacant lots owned by City of Philadelphia and suggested to hire a real estate attorney. 76. By this time in May 2008, Duke breached its two promises that it made to Plaintiff (1) offering Business Writing Course (2) assist Plaintiff in the preparation of business plan to develop vacant lots owned by City of Philadelphia. 4 Vamsi, I enjoyed our talk yesterday. There are some things we can discuss about the soft skill issues. I recommend that you look carefully at the MET! and TKI feedback, and we can also discuss the Difficult Conversations resources I alluded to yesterday. It would be interesting to see how your culture active results also shed light on some of the issues we discussed, since I believe the cultural background you came from may have influenced you greatly in your current style of communication. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 11 of 125
    • Page - 12 - of 125 77. In addition, by this time in May 2008, Duke failed to enforce anti-harassment policies. 78. While, Plaintiff struggling to understand as to why his classmates organized a smear campaign against Plaintiff, Professor Jill Stowe, between, May 2008 and June 2008 conducted three short exams. 79. Professor Jill Stowe, purposefully and continually targeted Plaintiff by incorrectly evaluating Plaintiff’ exam answers and prominently placed Plaintiff’ score cards to the public eye, in violation to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) (20 U.S.C. § 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99). 80. Plaintiff believes that Jill Stowe prominently placed Plaintiff’ score cards to the public eye to lower Plaintiff’ image among his classmates, because Plaintiff didn’t get high scores and the general perception that exam scores are proxy to estimate one’ intelligence. 81. Plaintiff was confused, distracted and under severe mental distress due to the ongoing harassment by his classmates, Plaintiff couldn’t able to contact Professor Jill Stowe to ask to reevaluate Plaintiff answers. 82. By the end of the Term-1, Defendants and Professor Jill Stowe created an impression among the WEMBA students that Plaintiff will be detained and will not be promoted to Term-2 and accordingly, Plaintiff’ classmates directly accused Plaintiff in front of Professor Jill Stowe. 83. In June 2008, on the last minute of the final exam of Professor Jill Stowe’ Probability and Statistics course, when Plaintiff is handing his answer sheet to Professor Jill Stowe, at the instigation of Pratibhash Chattopadhyay, Jennifer Erickson told to Professor Jill Stowe attributing to Plaintiff as “he is a criminal”. 84. At that time, immediately, Plaintiff asked Pratibhash Chattopadhyay and Jennifer Erickson, “Why would you call me a criminal”. At that time, Pratibhash Chattopadhyay and Jennifer Erickson didn’t respond to Plaintiff, and Professor Jill Stowe was mere spectator during that episode. 85. In June 2008, after final exam of Professor Jill Stowe’ Probability and Statistics course, when Plaintiff leaving the Duke’ Campus to airport, Defendant Moira Ringo purposefully approached Plaintiff and told to Plaintiff “this is the last trip for you to Durham, NC”. At that Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 12 of 125
    • Page - 13 - of 125 time, Plaintiff asked Defendant Moira Ringo, “What do you mean?” At that time, Defendant Moira Ringo response was vague, abrupt, and dismissive. 86. Later, it turn out that Professor Jill Stowe awarded a failing grade to Plaintiff, despite there is no Duke policy is required or expected to fail a student. 87. It is evident that, Professor Jill Stowe revealed Plaintiff’ failing grade to Plaintiff’ classmates, prior to evaluating Plaintiff’ final exam answers and prior to informing Plaintiff about his own grades is in violation to Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) (20 U.S.C. § 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99). 88. After, Plaintiff was informed by Duke Administration, that Professor Jill Stowe awarded a failing grade and that would detain Plaintiff to progress into Term-2, Plaintiff compared his all three short exam answer sheets; and his final exam answers with the Professor Jill Stowe’ answer keys and found that Professor Jill Stowe made blatant errors in evaluating Plaintiff’ answers. 89. As soon, Plaintiff observe the blatant errors in evaluating Plaintiff’ answers and subsequent award of a failing grade, Plaintiff challenged his grade, because Plaintiff believe that Professor Jill Stowe unfairly evaluated Plaintiff’ performance. 90. In his appeal, Plaintiff demanded Duke to review all WEMBA students answer sheets, whether Professor Jill Stowe used the same ‘yard stick’ to evaluate Plaintiff’ answer sheets. 91. Professor Jill Stowe without getting into reviewing WEMBA students answer sheets, and Plaintiff’ answer sheets, Professor Jill Stowe adjusted Plaintiff’ grade from fail to low pass. 92. Plaintiff believes that Duke and Professor Jill Stowe pre-empt a detailed enquiry into the review of WEMBA students answer sheets, by adjusting Plaintiff’ grade from fail to low pass to hide the fact that Professor Jill Stowe targeting Plaintiff by awarding a failing grade. 93. In fact and indeed Duke and Professor Jill Stowe foreclosed an enquiry into the review of all WEMBA students answer sheets and this is confirmed by the email5 communication between Duke Administrators Mark Miller and Dean Gallagher. 5 Regarding grade appeal, in an email that Mark Miller wrote to Dean Gallagher, that, “Good point. I think what he is looking for is ammunition to say that Jill did something inappropriate. My belief is that if we tell him that Jill chose to fail him but was in no way required or expected to do so, that will reinforce his believe that Jill is unfairly singling him out for a bad grade”. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 13 of 125
    • Page - 14 - of 125 94. In 2nd Week of June 2008, Duke announced WEMBA student’s partners’ weekend program and Plaintiff informed Duke Administration that his wife will attend WEMBA students partners’ weekend. 95. As soon Plaintiff informed Duke Administration that his wife will attend WEMBA students partners’ weekend, Sanjay Mishra and Sreedhar Manjigani along with Tina Hong approached Plaintiff and asked “is that really your wife you are bringing to the partners weekend?” 96. Plaintiff was humiliated and embraced and don’t know how to respond to the vulgar, indecent, obscene, lewd and offensive question and left them. 97. Plaintiff believe that, Plaintiff’ classmates asked this vulgar and offensive question because, Plaintiff’ classmates believe Defendant Moira Ringo’ statements about Plaintiff’ alleged adultery and Plaintiff is bringing someone else as his wife, despite few times Plaintiff told to these same classmates that he is married and living with his wife in Philadelphia. 98. In 2nd Week of June 2008, during the WEMBA students’ partners’ weekend, Plaintiff introduced his wife to several of his classmates, including spouses of the Sanjay Mishra and Sreedhar Manjigani along with Tina Hong. 99. Later, in the evening, Plaintiff introduced his wife to Rajiv Prasad Kolagani and Anj Balusu and to their spouses and sit together at the same dinner table. While, everyone at the table having dinner, Rajiv Prasad Kolagani told to Anj Balusu and to his spouse that Plaintiff is staying “illegal” in this country. 100. After the dinner, Plaintiff called on Rajiv Prasad Kolagani, and asked him what made him to believe that Plaintiff is “illegal” in this country and asked his explanation. At that time, Defendant Rajiv Prasad Kolagani’ answer was abrupt and dismissive. 101. Plaintiff believe that, Rajiv Prasad Kolagani speculated and prejudiced Plaintiff because of his marital status and “age difference between him and his wife” as a proxy to his “illusionary” defect on part of Plaintiff as an “illegal alien”. 102. Plaintiff believe that Defendant Moira Ringo’ statements about Plaintiff’ alleged adultery established some preconceived notions about Plaintiff in the minds of his classmates, and after Plaintiff introduced his wife, Plaintiff’ classmates draw their own conclusions and one of the conclusion is Plaintiff as an “illegal alien”. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 14 of 125
    • Page - 15 - of 125 103. In July 2008, Duke conducted an on campus recruitment event. Plaintiff along with his classmates attended that event. At that campus recruitment event, Plaintiff classmates Rick Weiss and Suhash Bhavsar followed Plaintiff and made several hand and facial gestures to recruiters, while several recruiters are watching them by conveying a meaning that Plaintiff is not a good candidate. 104. On 28th July 2008, Plaintiff contacted Rick Weiss via email as follows: “Rick, It looks like you have an issue with me. I did observe that you are trying to ridicule or undermine me. I would like to make some things clear with you. Let me know when would be good time for you to talk to me?” 105. On 29th July 2008, Rick Weiss responded to Plaintiff as follows: “Vamsi, I'm not sure where you got that idea from, but maybe that's part of the problem. I'll be around Fuqua all day today and I'll be more than happy to talk to you. Rick” 106. Immediately, Plaintiff in a gentle manner spoke with Rick Weiss and explained his hand and facial gestures putting down the Plaintiff in front of recruiters along with Suhash Bhavsar and asked him to explain what message he is getting from those hand and facial gestures. Rick Weiss response was vague and abrupt. 107. Rick Weiss’ hand and facial gestures putting down the Plaintiff by using another classmate as his/her sidekick and made non-aural insinuating remarks against Plaintiff in a mocking fashion way. 108. Then immediately, Plaintiff enquired Duke Administration, whether Rick Weiss along with Suhash Bhavsar’ hand and facial gestures putting down the Plaintiff in front of recruiters at the recruitment events were allowed as per Duke’ anti-harassment policy. At that time, Duke Administration told to Plaintiff that Duke Policy doesn’t allow such kind of behavior. 109. At that time, Plaintiff told to Duke Administration about Rick Weiss and Suhash Bhavsar’ behavior and how it affected him, because recruiters didn’t pay attention to Plaintiff’ resume and asked Duke Administration to take an action. Nevertheless, Duke Administration didn’t take any action against Rick Weiss and Suhash Bhavsar. 110. Plaintiff believe that Defendant Moira Ringo’ statements about Plaintiff lacking academic integrity and alleged past academic dishonesty established preconceived notions about Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 15 of 125
    • Page - 16 - of 125 Plaintiff in the minds of Rick Weiss and Suhash Bhavsar, and with that preconceived notions, Rick Weiss and Suhash Bhavsar draw their own conclusions and with that backdrop Rick Weiss and Suhash Bhavsar told to recruiters not to hire Plaintiff. 111. While Plaintiff struggling to understand the reason for WEMBA students hostility towards Plaintiff, in July 2008, Sarah Rosen Shah, Duke’ admissions councilor relocated from Durham, NC to Philadelphia, PA and specifically purchased a condo in the building in which Plaintiff was residing for over three years. 112. In fact and indeed, after Sarah Rosen Shaw relocated from Durham, NC to Philadelphia, PA and moved into building in which Plaintiff was residing, conducted psychological operation and induced the behavior of other residents in and around building favorable to Duke professors and Plaintiff classmates objectives, by undermine Plaintiff’ professional status and personal standing by way of isolation and destabilization. 113. As soon, Sarah Rosen Shaw relocated to Philadelphia, PA, told to Plaintiff’ neighbors about Plaintiff’ private and confidential information, such as his past academic record; his current and future career plans embedded in the admission essays; recommenders’ opinions about Plaintiff which was expressed in recommendation letters; Plaintiff’ own opinions about Plaintiff which he expressed in his admission essays in violation to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) (20 U.S.C. § 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99). 114. In addition, Sarah Rosen Shah, after relocating from Durham, NC to Philadelphia, PA maintained constant contact with the Defendants trough various channels such as email, social networking sites, telephone and through travel. 115. Since, July 2008 and until Plaintiff completes his MBA at Duke, Sarah Rosen Shah and Defendants, in real-time exchange details of the Defendants repeated, ongoing and objectionable egregious verbal attacks against Plaintiff at Duke. 116. In real-time Sarah Rosen Shah relayed Defendants egregious verbal attacks6 against Plaintiff to Plaintiffs’ neighbors. 6 Since, July 2008 until Plaintiff completes his MBA program at Duke, Sarah Rosen Shah relayed the statements made by Plaintiff’ classmates to Plaintiff neighbors as “Vamsi is a criminal”; “Vamsi was implicated in murder cases”; “Vamsi was a Juvenile”; “Vamsi is having rough time at School”, “Vamsi is getting failing grades” and Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 16 of 125
    • Page - 17 - of 125 117. After, Plaintiff challenged Professor Jill Stowe’ blatant errors and due to subsequent changes to Plaintiff’ letter grade, Duke allowed Plaintiff to continue in the WEMBA program. 118. Despite, Duke allowed Plaintiff to continue in the WEMBA program, Defendants along with Plaintiff’ class representatives7 obstructed Plaintiff from freely participating in the class discussions by asking Duke Professors to prevent Plaintiff from asking questions in the class. This is in violation to Duke Policy. 119. Since, Defendants along with Plaintiff’ class representatives blocked Plaintiff from seeking clarifications from professors, and interfering with Plaintiffs’ learning process and learning ability, Plaintiff begins to post his questions in the Duke’ course on-line portal. 120. As soon Plaintiff begins to post his questions in the Duke’ course on-line portal, since 1st week of August 2008, Sanjay Mishra, Sreedhar Manjigani, Guru Sarma, Rick Weiss, Douglas Bashar and Amit Khare begins to ask Plaintiff not to post his questions in the Duke’ course on-line portal. 121. In response to Sanjay Mishra, Sreedhar Manjigani, Guru Sarma, Rick Weiss, Douglas Bashar and Amit Khare’ demand, Plaintiff told to them because Defendants along with Plaintiff’ class representatives blocked Plaintiff from seeking clarifications from professors, and interfering with Plaintiffs’ learning process and learning ability, Plaintiff has to seek his clarifications by posting his questions in the Duke’ course on-line portal. 122. Despite, Plaintiffs’ reasonable explanation, Sanjay Mishra, Sreedhar Manjigani, Guru Sarma, Rick Weiss, Douglas Bashar and Amit Khare insisted upon Plaintiff not to post any questions or responses in the Duke’ course on-line portal. 123. Plaintiff believe that because, Defendant Moira Ringo told to Plaintiffs’ classmates that Plaintiff lacks academic integrity and alleged past academic dishonesty, Sanjay Mishra, Sreedhar Manjigani, Guru Sarma, Rick Weiss, Douglas Bashar and Amit Khare established negative perception about Plaintiff, and with that perception, Plaintiff’ classmates shut-out “Vamsi is illegal in this country”. “Vamsi engaged in money laundering business”; “Vamsi plagiarized during the course”, “Vamsi is carrying a gun in the campus”; “Vamsi is a ‘B’ student”; “Vamsi is 3rd class student”; “Vamsi is pimp”; and “Vamsi is gay”; “Vamsi, is using psycho stimulants”; 7 Dan Paschke, John D. Cooper, Kristofer Singleton, and Tim Barry Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 17 of 125
    • Page - 18 - of 125 Plaintiff from being visible to professors, because as per Duke’ policy being active in the on- line in the Duke’ course on-line web portal, is also counts towards class participation, and class participation get certain points towards final course score and Defendants don’t want Plaintiff to get higher scores, hence blocked Plaintiff from participating in the course discussions. 124. On 15th September 2008, Plaintiff contacted Defendant Moira Ringo via email8 and asked her as to why she is propagating negative information about Plaintiff. Nevertheless, Defendant Moira Ringo didn’t respond to Plaintiff. 125. On 15th September 2008, Plaintiff contacted Rajiv Patnaik via email9 and asked him why he is shutting-out Plaintiff. However, Rajiv Patnaik denied10 Plaintiff’ findings about him shutting-out Plaintiff by telling that his comments are not directed towards Plaintiff, but directed towards another Plaintiff’ classmate Uday Kumar. 126. Rajiv Patnaik’ verbal abuse is a classic example as to how Plaintiff’ classmates use another classmate as his/her sidekick made verbal assaults and made insinuating verbal remarks against Plaintiff in a mocking fashion way. 127. On 15th September 2008, Plaintiff contacted Guru Sarma via email11 and asked him why he is shutting-out Plaintiff from participating in the class discussions. However, Guru Sarma 8 “Moira Ringo, throughout the 1st & 2nd semesters you have propagated negative information, with an intention to afflict pain to me. Why did you do that? Who provided you that information? What is your source of information? Do you want me to remind you about where, how and what did you say? I need a straight answer”. 9 “Rajiv Patnaik, Why are you trying to pass insulting comments? You know that "Chup Bhe" is a derogatory word. Why should I shut my mouth? Who are you to ask me? You passed similar kind of comments in the first term and you know that. What made you think that I will keep quiet?” 10 Hi Vamshi, that was supposed to be a joke and I was actually telling that to Uday and was not really directed at you. Uday and I have a very informal relationship and we pass comments at each other all the time for fun. "Chup be" is not always a derogatory comment and is a very commonly used term - especially between friends. Words like "Chup be" and "Sala" are used very informally and very commonly and not always meant to insult people. They of course can be used as an insult depending on the context and depends on the tone of the person. I apologize if it was insulting to you because that was defintely not my intention. You are absolutely correct that I am no one to tell you to shut up and I definitely did not say it to you. Honestly, I don't even remmber saying that to you earlier and again it was never my intension to insult you. So hopefully you are able to put this behind you and do not take this personally. Rajiv.” 11 “Guru Sarma, You have asked me not to post any comments on the bulletin boards. Do you know that it is offensive? It is my right to express and communicate with fellow students. This is not the first time you passed Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 18 of 125
    • Page - 19 - of 125 cleverly denied12 by saying that he never said don’t post any discussions, but said spare him and other students from the ton of messages. 128. It is self evident from the both Rajiv Patnaik and Guru Sarma’ responses, that they both attempted to block Plaintiff from participating in the class discussions. 129. But by the end of September 2008, there were numerous false stories floating around Duke, which severely impacted Plaintiff’ reputation. Among the rumors, the notable ones are “Plaintiff is a Juvenile Delinquent”, “Plaintiff was implicated in murder cases” and “Plaintiff engaged in money laundering business”. 130. By the end of September 2008, defendants’ psychological manipulation of Plaintiff through subtle, indirect, or implied threats, lead the Plaintiff to hesitate to mingle with WEMBA students. 131. Right around that time, in September 2008, Defendant Brooke Balcom, several times, walk- past Plaintiff and inappropriately hit Plaintiff with her hip or her upper body portion, when Plaintiff standing in the line for the food or move in and out of the classroom during the class breaks. 132. Because there is so much hostility towards Plaintiff in the Duke Campus, Plaintiff didn’t say a word to either Defendant Brooke Balcom or to Duke Administration, but took extraordinary measure to avoid Defendant Brooke Balcom. comments at me (and you know that). Alternatively, do you want me to remind you the situations? Why did you do that?” 12 “Vamsi, I am totally sorry. I never said don’t post any. I said spare us from the ton of messages. C’mon man, there was a period earlier this term, when the # of messages just went up sky rocketing and it was not possible to follow the various posts. I am sorry that it was sounding offensive. But it almost came across as if you had all the time to post, while many or at least I found it even difficult to read post (forget about writing any). It would have been easy from your perspective when you get involved with the posts, but it becomes difficult to follow every message on the boards amidst of the crunching assignments and exams. We may very well be partners in the next term. You never know. But I should have been more clear and not jovial about it. Where else did I say this apart from this weekend? I did mention in the computing lounge if there is a way to rank the various messages so that I could make use of the ranking done by a majority of the classmates, rather than just by the # of posts in a thread. But that was a constructive tool addition for everyone. It is not singled out against you. Okay if there has been any other comments made by me let me know. It takes a strong character to come out and open up with me directly. I am sorry and would like to maintain good terms with you. Guru.” Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 19 of 125
    • Page - 20 - of 125 133. While, Plaintiff took extraordinary measure to avoid Defendant Brooke Balcom, sometime in October 2008, approached Plaintiff, when Plaintiff is waiting to catch a bus to go to airport, in front of other students said that “you are full off it….”. 134. At that-time Plaintiff didn’t fully understand Defendant Brooke Balcom’ expression, but guessed that she isn’t saying anything nice, and Plaintiff moved away from Defendant Brooke Balcom. 135. When Plaintiff fly back to Philadelphia, PA, when he relayed it to his wife about Defendant Brooke Balcom’ expression, and she explained it to him and Plaintiff understood that Defendant Brook Balcom spreading slanderous messages about him in the student community. 136. Since October 2008, Defendant Brooke Balcom, has been proliferating among Plaintiff’ classmates about Plaintiff saying that, “he was an angry and unhappy person”, which made other students to outcast Plaintiff. 137. While, Plaintiff is an outcast among the students, in the beginning of October 2008, Duke assigned Plaintiff into a new team; and Plaintiff’ new team member are Navaneeth Latawa and Defendants Robert Ball, Robert Ross and Shana Keating. 138. Plaintiff heard a rumor that Defendants Robert Ball, Robert Ross and Shana Keating, scuttle Plaintiff and compel Duke to expel Plaintiff. 139. As soon new team is formed, Plaintiff’ new teammates Defendants Robert Ball, Robert Ross and Shana Keating proposed to use new software applications that aren’t authorized by Duke. 140. Plaintiff objected to use software applications that aren’t authorized by Duke, because Plaintiff purchased infrastructure to use Duke’ authorized software. 141. In addition, the software applications proposed by Defendants Robert Ball, Robert Ross and Shana Keating don’t allow Plaintiff to know who are all present during a virtual team meeting and any person sitting beside Defendants Robert Ball, Robert Ross and Shana Keating can listen discussions. 142. In addition Plaintiff was worried that Defendants Robert Ball, Robert Ross and Shana Keating covertly record Plaintiffs conversations and later use those conversations against Plaintiff. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 20 of 125
    • Page - 21 - of 125 143. Despite, Plaintiff raised his objections to use the software applications that aren’t authorized by Duke, Defendants Robert Ball, Robert Ross and Shana Keating as majority dictated, mandated and imposed their unilateral decision to use non authorized software upon Plaintiff. Since then, Plaintiff was a reluctant participant in the team meetings. 144. In addition, Defendants Robert Ball, Robert Ross and Shana Keating shut-out Plaintiff’ reasonable suggestions as to how to tackle team projects. 145. In addition, Defendants Robert Ball, Robert Ross and Shana Keating’ body language and non verbal gestures clearly suggests Plaintiff, that they are undermining Plaintiff’ credibility. 146. Plaintiff believe that Defendants Moira Ringo and Brook Balcom’ proliferation that Plaintiff as an angry and unhappy person; lacks academic integrity and alleged adultery lead Defendants Robert Ball, Robert Ross and Shana Keating to undermine Plaintiff’ credibility. 147. While this is going on, Sanjay Mishra made devious, deceitful and insinuating remarks about Plaintiff’ academic integrity, so on 18th October 2008 Plaintiff contacted Sanjay Mishra and asked him as to why he is making insinuating remarks about Plaintiff’ academic integrity. In response, Sanjay Mishra denied13 that he ever made any insinuating remarks about Plaintiff’ academic integrity. 148. Nevertheless, because Plaintiff unequivocally told to Sanjay Mishra about his insinuating remarks about Plaintiff’ academic integrity, on 20th October 2009, Plaintiff and responded14 to Sanjay Mishra by saying that Plaintiff will do will do whatever is necessary to protect his dignity and freedom. 13 “Hi Vamsi, I have no political profess like you so I will be direct. I am flabbergasted with your false confusing and accusing phone call. I am feeling bit harassed. I have a great respect for your bold unique thinking style and your entrepreneurship energy. If you like, similar to other people perception issues you have shared with our previous team and me in the past, we can talk face-to-face next time we meet. Once I understand your concerns properly, I promise work with you to resolve them. I am confident we can keep our friendship intact. As I also mentioned during your phone call, you can take this matter to the Fuqua body, for proper due diligence. Your call. Thanks Sanjay 14 “Thank you for your email. I sincerely believe that I have been harassed by the fellow students and you are one of them. I am surprised by your response that I am harassing you. I will do whatever is necessary to protect my dignity and freedom. Thank You, Vamsidhar” Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 21 of 125
    • Page - 22 - of 125 149. As soon as Plaintiff made it clear that he will do whatever is necessary to protect his dignity and freedom, next day, on 21st October 2008, Jason Link started an on-line discussion about guns15 on Duke’ web portal and personally enticed Plaintiff to respond to his posting about guns. 150. Plaintiff was suspicious about Jason Link’ approach, and didn’t respond to Jason Link’ prodding to participate in his on-line discussion about guns on Duke’ web portal. 151. Nevertheless, there are very many Plaintiff’ classmates16 quickly, enthusiastically participated in the discussion and declared as to how many guns that they own and the size of the bullets that they use and how recently that they fired those guns. 152. Because, Plaintiff didn’t participate in Jason Link’ on-line discussion about guns on Duke’ web portal, Jason Link along with Defendant Pete Walton, Kristopher Singleton, Doug Basher, Amit Khare, John Dohnal and Greg Valentine personally approached Plaintiff and asked Plaintiff to come to a firing range. But Plaintiff told to Jason Link that he isn’t interested to go a firing range. 153. Because, there are very many classmates through their behavior, verbal assaults, and non- verbal gestures made it known to Plaintiff that, they are committed to make Plaintiff’ life in and out of Duke miserable, Plaintiff believed that Defendant Pete Walton along with Jason Link, Kristopher Singleton, Doug Basher, Amit Khare, John Dohnal and Greg Valentine had personal animosity, hatred and anger against Plaintiff and suspected about the motives behind the on-line discussion about guns and avoided on-line discussion about guns and refused to go to shooting range along with Plaintiff’ classmates. 154. Plaintiff and suspected the motives behind the on-line discussion about guns, is because as to how the on-line discussion about guns were initiated and the online comments made by several of his classmates, indirectly referring to Plaintiff’ casual comments about his liking towards gold wrist watches made by renowned watch makers like ‘Patek Philippe’ and 15 Subject: I keep my hand on my gun, cuz they got me on the run  Don't think I've seen this discussed yet...politics aside...if you were looking for a first firearm, what would be your choice? Basically, I'm looking for a gun to keep around the house and take to the range (mainly for the range)...Opinions? 16 John Espey, James Morgan, Kristofer Singleton, Dan Paschke, Tim Barry, Nat Hawkins, John Cooper, Jason Sundberg, John H. Dohnal Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 22 of 125
    • Page - 23 - of 125 ‘Audemars Piguet’ and sarcastically asking Plaintiff to wear those watches and come to shooting range. 155. Few days later, in October 2008, Duke organized a Halloween party for WEMBA students and Plaintiff was reluctant to participate in the class functions, due to his classmates’ personal animosity, hatred, anger and slanderous verbal assaults against Plaintiff. 156. However, Duke Administration organized the Halloween party in the R. David Thomas center at the dinner hall, when dinner is served for the WEMBA students and it was inevitable to Plaintiff to come across his classmates’ at Halloween party. 157. While, Plaintiff was alone, sitting quietly and taking his dinner and at that time Jason Sundberg dressed like a “pimp” approached Plaintiff along with other students and told to Plaintiff that his dress is suitable for “Vamsi’ real life”. 158. Then, Plaintiff make it known to Jason Sundberg that it isn’t right to make a parallel to his party dress and to Plaintiff real life, because throughout the world pimp17 draw a seriously negative attention in the society and moved away from Jason Sundberg along with dinner plate and sit at a different location in the diner hall to complete his dinner. 159. As soon, Plaintiff relocated to a different seat, Pradeep Rajagopal gathered few students around Plaintiff and instigated another student Ashish Chhabra to call the Plaintiff something like “Madar Chod” or “Mai Chod” in Hindi. Plaintiff didn’t understand the meaning of Ashish Chhabra’ comment, but had a feeling that it must mean something terrible, so Plaintiff asked Ashish Chhabra the meaning of his Hindi comment. At that time, Pradeep Rajagopal interjected and told the meaning of that Hindi comment is “mother fucker” in English. 160. Right after that, Gregory Valentine gathered few students around Plaintiff and started talking about Plaintiff’ performance in Probability and Statistics examination and told to the Plaintiff that he knew that “Vamsi is a ‘B’ student”. Then, Plaintiff enquired Gregory 17 A pimp is an agent for prostitutes who collects part of their earnings. This act is called procuring. The pimp may receive this money in return for advertising services, physical protection, or for providing, and possibly monopolizing, a location where she may engage clients. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 23 of 125
    • Page - 24 - of 125 Valentine as, “what made you to talk like that?”. Then Gregory Valentine told to Plaintiff that, “I knew your grades”. Then, Plaintiff enquired Gregory Valentine as, “how did you come to know my grades?”. But Gregory Valentine’ response was vague and abrupt. 161. Gregory Valentine knowing about Plaintiff’ grades is in violation to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) (20 U.S.C. § 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99), because he don’t have any need to know about Plaintiff’ grades. 162. Right after that, Plaintiff moved his seat and went outside of the R. David Thomas Center dinner hall to complete his dinner. At that time, Defendant Peter Walton gathered few students around Plaintiff and started reiterating Jason Sundberg, Pradeep Rajagopal and Ashish Chhabra’ derogatory remarks. 163. Then, Plaintiff told to Defendant Peter Walton “leave me alone” and in response, Defendant Peter Walton said to Plaintiff, “You are a 3rd class student” in front of other students. 164. Plaintiff immediately reported to Duke Administration about obscene language and conduct of Jason Sundberg, Pradeep Rajagopal and Ashish Chhabra. Nevertheless, Duke Administration didn’t even respond to Plaintiff. 165. While Plaintiff has been shut-out in the class and outside the class by the defendants, throughout November 2008 and December 2008, Defendants Robert Ball, Robert Ross and Shana Keating shut-out Plaintiff within the Duke’ learning team and discarded every contribution made by Plaintiff towards Duke course work and refused to include Plaintiff’ contribution in the class project, without providing any reason. 166. On 9th January 2009, Plaintiff questioned the reason for not including Plaintiff’ contribution in the class project, Defendant Robert Ross told to Plaintiff in front of Defendants Robert Ball and Robert Ross that, “you dug a hole for yourself to get buried”, while very many students prominently looking at Defendant Robert Ross and Plaintiff. 167. Immediately Plaintiff became alarmed because just a day before, on 8th January 2009, Plaintiff’ manager at Wyeth used the exact same phrase said the same phrase “you dug a hole for yourself to get buried” against Plaintiff. 168. So at that time, Plaintiff asked the Defendant Robert Ross, “What made you to talk like that?” Instead answering Plaintiff’ question, Defendant Robert Ross further accused Plaintiff, Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 24 of 125
    • Page - 25 - of 125 that “you have plagiarized during your undergraduate program and probably you plagiarize now”; in response, Plaintiff asked Defendant Robert Ross, “why do you say that, I have plagiarized and who told you that I have plagiarized in my undergraduate program?” Defendant Robert Ross response was dismissive, vague and abrupt. 169. At the same time, Defendant Shana Keating made several hand and facial gestures in a mocking fashion-way along with Defendant Robert Ball, while several classmates are watching her by conveying a meaning that Plaintiff is not intelligent. 170. Immediately after the conversation, Defendant Robert Ross discarded all of Plaintiff’ contributions to the Managerial Accounting course work and submitted final paper as per Defendants Robert Ball, Robert Ross and Shana Keating’ agenda and didn’t event explain to Plaintiff, as to why they are discarding Plaintiff’ contributions. 171. On 9th January 2009, evening, Plaintiff tried to make peace with other students, so Plaintiff along with other students Anj Balusu and Rajiv Kolagani went outside the Duke to have their dinner together. 172. By the time Plaintiff, Anj Balusu and Rajiv Kolagani went to the restaurant, Jamie Thompson and Defendant Brooke Balcom having dinner at that restaurant; restaurant asked Plaintiff, Anj Balusu and Rajiv Kolagani to sit at an adjoin table to Jamie Thompson and Defendant Brooke Balcom. 173. Rajiv Kolagani and Anj Balusu having conversations with Jamie Thompson and Defendant Brooke Balcom and during those conversations, Rajiv Kolagani made accusatory style verbal remarks against Plaintiff, that he had a police “Rap Sheet”. Immediately, Plaintiff denied Rajiv Kolagani’ statement and left the dinner table. 174. After, returning from the restaurant, while Plaintiff quietly sitting in the R. David Thomas Center’ lounge area, Amit Khare gathered several classmates and started asking questions about Plaintiff’ business. 175. In response, Plaintiff told to Amit Khare, that he don’t want to answer his questions. In response, Amit Khare made accusatory style verbal remarks against Plaintiff, that “none of the classmates believe you”. While Plaintiff is dismayed with Amit Khare’ accusation, Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 25 of 125
    • Page - 26 - of 125 Pratibhash Chattopadhyay made a depreciatory verbal remark attributing to Plaintiff, that “he is low self esteemed person”. 176. Plaintiff doesn’t know how to respond and tackle the defendants and his classmates verbal mauling and left to his room without responding to Amit Khare and Pratibhash Chattopadhyay. 177. Next day, on 10th January 2009, Plaintiff tried to make peace with Defendants Robert Ball, Robert Ross and Shana Keating, and met them during coffee break. At that time, Defendant Robert Ross made accusatory style verbal remarks against Plaintiff that “you are a load on the team and not contributed as much I contributed”. At that time, Plaintiff responded to Defendant Robert Ross that “it is not a fact, it is your opinion and you are entitled to have an opinion” and Plaintiff left to classroom without waiting for Defendant Robert Ross response. 178. On 10th January 2009, after noon, when Plaintiff coming back from break-room into the class, Defendant Brooke Balcom, inappropriately hit Plaintiff with her hip and immediately Plaintiff was upset with Defendant Brooke Balcom and asked, “why did you say to me ‘you are full of it’”. Defendant Brooke Balcom without responding to Plaintiff walks past Plaintiff and showing an upbeat gave a high five to Defendant Daniel Paschke. 179. On 10th January 2009, after classes are over, Defendants Brooke Balcom, Daniel Bennion, John Cooper, Daniel Paschke, Robert Ross, Robert Ball, Nathaniel Hawkins, Peter Walton, Moira Ringo and Shana Keating in an organized fashion fabricated and unveiled a dramatic, exaggerated and sensationalized story against Plaintiff to get an immediate attention from Duke Administration and to compel Duke Administration to expel Plaintiff from Duke. 180. On 10th January 2009, Defendant Daniel Paschke made a oral complaint against Plaintiff to Katherine Amato18 and wrote an email complaint to John Gallagher19 and Alaina Filkin20 by exaggerating Plaintiff’ casual enquiry with Defendant Brooke Balcom as a verbal 18 Assistant Dean, Executive MBA Programs, The Fuqua School of Business, Duke University 19 Associate Dean, Executive MBA Programs, The Fuqua School of Business, Duke University. 20 Assistant Director, Executive MBA Programs, The Fuqua School of Business, Duke University Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 26 of 125
    • Page - 27 - of 125 confrontation21 ; and dramatized Defendant Brooke Balcom’ reactions to Plaintiff’ casual enquiry. 181. In addition, Defendant Daniel Paschke made a big deal out of simple Plaintiff’ enquiry and catastrophized simple event of Plaintiff’ gentle enquiry to Defendant Brooke Balcom as to why she is spreading accusatory style remarks against Plaintiff. 182. In fact, when Plaintiff attempted to enquire Defendant Brooke Balcom, she simply ignored and walk past Plaintiff and in an upbeat gave a high five to Defendant Daniel Paschke. But Defendant Daniel Paschke dramatized, exaggerated and sensationalized by lying that Defendant Brooke Balcom is visibly upset to a point of crying and shaking. 183. On 11th January 2009, Defendant Daniel Paschke wrote another email22 to John Gallagher and Alaina Filkin by exaggerating a single verbal enquiry of Defendant Moira Ringo as a never-ending pattern of Plaintiff’ ‘run-in’ behavior. 21 “John & Alaina, It was brought to the class reps attention at the end of this weekend that one of our classmates has had an altercation with more than one student and some folks are beginning to feel uncomfortable with this particular student. I have firsthand knowledge from one student for sure that there was an incident towards the end of the day that left a student visibly upset to the point of crying and shaking a little bit. Cleary this is not acceptable and violates the learning environment we are all interested in having while at Fuqua. Several other students approached me today with some other anecdotal stories regarding this same person. Obviously this needs to be addressed but is something the class reps feel strongly we need input/action/guidance from the administration on. I have left a message on the WEMBA voicemail hotline (I believe it was Catherina Amatto's voicemail) regarding this matter as well. We are requesting a conference call as soon as possible to discuss possible next steps. I can be reached at 919.740.4449 if needed and waiting until Monday is not necessary if see fit. I am happy to discuss over the phone tonight or Sunday if this is received. Thank you for your prompt attention in this matter. DP” 22 “John and Alaina, upon beginning to ask questions in regards to Vamisdhar, students who I spoke with mentioned other students who the knew had negative encounters with Vamisdhar. Followed up with as many of those students as I could in a vague way to give them a chance to talk about their encounter. Moira Ringo is one of those students who called me this evening and was very glad to know we have involved you both to look into his behavior. She forwarded me the below email that was sent to her from Vamisdhar a few months ago that she originally choose to ignore but did save a copy of. She also was confronted by him this past weekend and witnessed the confrontation with Greg Valentine. - Both her account of what happened and the original email are below in this string of emails. Please include her in your list of potential students to talk with regarding his behavior. l She told me she would be more than happy to discuss her interactions with either of you but is very glad that some action has been taken as she is not comfortable with his behavior right now. I believe there is a bit of a cry for help here from the pattern I am seeing develop. Again, thank you to you both for taking this seriously as I believe we have a fellow classmate who is in need of some help. Please let me know if you need anything else from me” Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 27 of 125
    • Page - 28 - of 125 184. It is evident that Defendant Daniel Paschke attempted to manipulate John Gallagher and Alaina Filkin’ perception about Plaintiff through deception, by dramatizing, exaggerating, sensationalizing and fabricating facts. 185. In addition, on 10th January 2009 when John Gallagher called Defendant Daniel Paschke to find more information about his alleged verbal confrontation, Defendant Daniel Paschke didn’t say single fact that as to how he himself harassed Plaintiff by out-casting and shut-out Plaintiff in the class. 186. In addition, Defendant Daniel Paschke lied to John Gallagher that he had seen Defendant Brooke Balcom return to class where she appeared shaken up and emotional following the last class break of the day, when in fact Defendant Brooke Balcom was in upbeat and gave a high five immediately after Plaintiff asked why she said that ‘you are full of it’. 187. In addition, Defendant Daniel Paschke lied to John Gallagher that Defendant Brooke Balcom reported to him that she had a verbal confrontation with Plaintiff during the break and it left her shaken and crying. 188. In addition, Defendant Daniel Paschke lied to John Gallagher, that Defendant Brooke Balcom was confused and unsure what it was that Plaintiff was accusing her of, when in fact Defendant Brooke Balcom was in upbeat and gave a high five immediately after Plaintiff asked why she said that ‘you are full of it’. 189. In addition, Defendant Daniel Paschke told to John Gallagher, when Defendant Daniel Paschke shared Defendant Brooke Balcom’ reported incident with other class representatives, some of them reported having heard comments about Plaintiff’ behavior in the past. 190. On 11th January 2009, Defendant Daniel Paschke wrote another email to John Gallagher after he spoke with John Gallagher and added even more dramatic, exaggerated and sensationalized information by dubbing Plaintiff’ simple enquiry as overly aggressive23 . 23 “John, Thank you for calling me today to discuss the incidents with a few students this weekend. Per our conversation, the student who was overly aggressive with others was Vamsidhar Vurimindi. The other students we discussed you speaking with are: 1) Brooke Balcom - female student who I spoke with first hand and was crying/shaking after the confrontation Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 28 of 125
    • Page - 29 - of 125 191. In addition, on 11th January 2009, Defendant Daniel Paschke wrote an email24 to other Class representatives25 in a tone and manner that Duke Administration affirmed his catastrophization of simple Plaintiff’ enquiry and suggested to other Class representatives to continue to shut-out Plaintiff in the Duke Campus. 192. 193. On 11th January 2009, Defendant Moira Ringo ruthlessly is having no qualms about causing harm to Plaintiff, lied26 about Plaintiff’ interactions with her. 2) Greg Valentine - student who I also spoke with first hand who had a less aggressive encounter but one none the less during the same break 3) Daniel Bennion - student who said 4 or 6 people at his lunch table had received confrontational emails from the same individual 4) Nat Hawkins - student who first shared the Brooke story and other details with me and asked that I involve the class reps and/or administration Per our discussion, I will give Brooke and Greg a heads up you them but will let your discussions lead you from there regarding other names. I just wanted you to have them in writing in case you felt you needed them. Thanks again for your attention to this matter and please let us know how we can help going forward. 24 Class reps, John has asked that we keep our eyes and ears open for more information around this topic and share anything we hear about. Other than that, he plans to make contact with Brooke and maybe Greg and decide were to go from there. His discussions with those 2 will be what helps him decide if/when he contacts Vamisdhar directly or what the next steps are. Let me know if you have any questions. DP” 25 John D. Cooper, Kristofer Singleton, and Tim Barry 26 Here is the e-mail I got from Vamsi back in September. At this point in time, I had spoken to him about 10 minutes total and even had to look him up in the directory to figure out who he was. I wrote back and asked him to explain this e-mail, and he never responded. After the e-mail, I avoided speaking to him because he seemed to make poorly informed and disrespectful statements with others in public forums. On Saturday, he approached me in the break room and stated that in was applying my ethical standard at work; he was concerned about the future of my company because he 'had skin in the game.' I responded that health care was pretty unique in terms of ethical standard, to which he responded with a very energetic list of his qualifications to make the statement that he had. He appeared to be picking a fight with me, so I walked away and went to class. A few hours later I saw him talking to Greg in the hallway in a raised tone. When Greg and Derek came into the classroom later, they were both stunned and Greg was upset. Greg was on-deck to present in Econ class, and I did not want this to shake him. I assured Greg that Vamsi had picked a fight with me earlier that day and that was just how he was. Robert Ross came over and told Greg that Vamsi had another interaction with a student as well. The e-mail that he sent me and the argument he had with Greg are not within normal behavior. Picking two tights with different students within a few hours is also not typical. Be careful how you approach this because I think there is more going on here than a difficult person, and I do not want you or the student reps to chew up unnecessary energy on something that may not be able to be reasoned out. If I were in your shoes, I would want to see an option where he's given the feedback and advised to get some counseling/evaluation. He asked to speak with me after class on Friday, and I refused. I plan to simply avoid him. I will keep you updated if he e-mails me or tries to pick another fight with me, but I do not expect it to be a problem. Moira” Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 29 of 125
    • Page - 30 - of 125 194. On 12th January 2009, when John Gallagher called Defendant Brooke Balcom, she lied, exaggerated and sensationalized27 Plaintiff’ simple casual enquiry as an angry conversation. 195. In addition Defendant Brooke Balcom lied28 to John Gallagher that she is trying to communicate with Plaintiff in a friendly manner, when in fact Defendant Brooke Balcom disregarded and ignored Plaintiff’ enquiry and walk past Plaintiff. 196. In addition Defendant Brooke Balcom lied29 exaggerated and sensationalized to John Gallagher that she was shaken and cried, when in fact she gave a high five to class representative, for successfully upsetting the Plaintiff. 197. In addition Defendant Brooke Balcom malign and smear Plaintiff’ reputation by attributing a sexual harassment30 by Plaintiff to John Gallagher. 198. On 12th January 2009, when John Gallagher called Defendant Nathaniel Hawkins malign and smear31 Plaintiff’ reputation by attributing simple and casual Plaintiff’ email enquiry to other students as “run-ins” to John Gallagher. 199. On 12th January 2009, when John Gallagher called Defendant Nathaniel Hawkins unveiled a sensational fabricated story32 against Plaintiff that, Plaintiff himself told to other students that he carry a gun at all times in the Duke Campus. 27 “Vamsi had come up to me during the last break of the day on Saturday and confronted me with an accusation that I had called him "full of it" in some context in the previous term. I thought he was joking with me and responded accordingly - laughing and chatting. I did not fully understand what Vamsi was saying, but I tried to joke and treat it as a light conversation of some kind. But Vamsi remained very focused, had a clear angry tone, and "looked right through me and past me" with his gaze”. 28 “Vamsi did not pick up on my body language or facial expression through which I am trying to communicate a friendly and casual tone, and a confusion about what he was referring to. As the conversation moved on and Vamsi remained in his posture, she became more and more unsettled. Vamsi retained an angry tone and demanding attitude. Vamsi was clearly upset with me and I did not understand why. I told him that he should not speak to her this way, and that she did not want him to speak with her again”. 29 “I felt shaken and upset, and cried while returning to class. 30 On some level I am concerned that Vamsi was an angry and unhappy person who had now focused on me”. 31 “I never engaged with Vamsi, nor witnessed any interactions personally. But, I heard that other students had found him difficult. Vamsi seems to be somewhat of an outcast in the class, there had been other reports of "run ins" with Vamsi” Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 30 of 125
    • Page - 31 - of 125 200. Simultaneously, Defendants Robert Ross, Robert Ball and Shana Keating intensified their malign and smear campaign against by fabricating fictitious stories which directly affect Plaintiff’ reputation by saying that Plaintiff’ daily business conduct is "hanky panky" implying that Plaintiff’ business conduct is dubious and suspicious. 201. In addition, Defendants Robert Ross, Robert Ball and Shana Keating malign and smeared Plaintiff’ reputation by fabricating fictitious stories by saying that Plaintiff’ daily business conduct is "bribing city hall" implying that Plaintiff engaged in corrupt business practice. 202. In addition, Defendants Robert Ross, Robert Ball and Shana Keating malign and smeared Plaintiff’ reputation by fabricating fictitious stories that Plaintiff’ daily business practice involve with employing “goons” implying that Plaintiff engaged goons in his daily business conduct. 203. In fact and indeed Defendants Robert Ross, Robert Ball and Shana Keating’ all fabricated fictitious Plaintiff’ daily business conduct is a big lie, and Plaintiff believe that Defendants Robert Ross, Robert Ball and Shana Keating along with other defendants fabricated fictitious stories against Plaintiff to rationalize their tortious and abusive conduct against Plaintiff. 204. In addition, between 11th January 2009 and 14th January 2009, Defendants Robert Ross, Robert Ball and Shana Keating filed a Duke Honor code violation against Plaintiff with Defendant Barnes baron and Harold Hong, despite it is clear to them that Plaintiff didn’t plagiarize his work. 205. After Defendants Robert Ross, Robert Ball and Shana Keating filed an honor code violation against Plaintiff and found by themselves that Plaintiff didn’t plagiarize his work, and drop the idea to initiate a formal Duke Honor code violation against Plaintiff, discarded all Plaintiff’ contributions into team course work project and when Plaintiff asked as to why they have discarded Plaintiff contributions, Defendants Robert Ross, Robert Ball and Shana Keating falsely accused Plaintiff has ‘plagiarized’ his course work. 206. On 14th January 2009, with the backdrop of the foregoing baseless allegations and accusations against Plaintiff by the defendants, John Gallagher initiated a telephone conversation with Plaintiff and enquired about Plaintiffs interactions with defendants. 32 “Defendant Peter Walton reported that Vamsi had told other students that he carried a weapon at all times”. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 31 of 125
    • Page - 32 - of 125 207. John Gallagher questioned Plaintiff about the alleged ‘verbal assault’ against Defendant Brooke Balcom and Plaintiff told to John Gallagher, that Defendant Brooke Balcom verbally assaulted Plaintiff by saying “you are full of it” in front of several people and to that effect Plaintiff casually enquired why she is verbally assaulting him. 208. On 14th January 2009, after enquiring about Defendant Brooke Balcom’ baseless and false accusation about Plaintiff’ verbal assault, John Gallagher asked Plaintiff “Did you carry a gun on the campus?” Plaintiff was shocked for that question and replied that, “I didn’t carry a gun on the campus”. In addition, Plaintiff reminded John Gallagher that, “I travel to Duke by flying through the commercial airline and passing security checks and it is impossible to carry a gun in the luggage”. 209. In addition, Plaintiff told to John Gallagher that, “on 23rd and 24th January 2009, I need to write Term 3 final exams and whoever complained that I am carrying a gun on the campus is a deliberate attempt to distract me from preparing my examinations” 210. Despite Plaintiff told numerous times to Duke Administration that Defendants are harassing Plaintiff and demanded to impose Duke’ Anti-Harassment Policy and create a congenial atmosphere to Plaintiff, Duke Administration never impose Duke’ Anti-Harassment Policy, but after Defendants Brooke Balcom, Daniel Bennion, John Cooper, Daniel Paschke, Robert Ross, Robert Ball, Nathaniel Hawkins, Peter Walton, Moira Ringo and Shana Keating collectively filed fabricated baseless complaints, Duke Administration compelled Plaintiff to attend for an interrogation before Bill Boulding33 on 23rd January 2009. 211. Based on the discovery documentation, it is clear that Defendants Brooke Balcom, Daniel Bennion, John Cooper, Daniel Paschke, Robert Ross, Robert Ball, Nathaniel Hawkins, Peter Walton, Moira Ringo and Shana Keating black-mailed Duke Administration by rising public dissention by sending bulk emails and publically posting in the Duke’ online portal, where Plaintiff don’t have access to compel Duke Administration to expel Plaintiff from Duke; and in order to appease the defendants, Duke Administration visibly interrogated Plaintiff before the defendants and thereby implying that Duke Administration affirming defendants 33 Senior Associate Dean, Executive MBA Programs, The Fuqua School of Business, Duke University Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 32 of 125
    • Page - 33 - of 125 abusive conduct against Plaintiff and give a free hand to defendants to continue the same abusive conduct and harassment against Plaintiff. 212. Despite, on 14th January 2009, Plaintiff assured John Gallagher that he didn’t carry a gun on the campus, on 15th January 2009, Katherine Amato on behalf of Duke, filed a police complaint against Plaintiff bearing report # 2009-0019534 by falsely accusing Plaintiff is confronting with defendants apparently for no reason and further made false accusation against Plaintiff based on a fabricated allegation by the Defendants Peter Walton and Nathaniel Hawkins that Plaintiff told to Defendant Peter Walton that he carries a gun in the campus. 213. After Katherine Amato filed a police complaint against Plaintiff, on 15th January 2009, Katherine Amato contacted wrote an email to Mark Brown35 and enquired him about Plaintiff’ interactions with him and about his concerns with the defendants. 214. In response, Mark Brown told36 to Katherine Amato that Plaintiff told him that he has a problem with just going along with ideas that he does not believe in and he has not learned the skill of the "social white lie". 34 “On 01/15/09 at 1625 hours I responded to speak with Ms. Amato in person. Ms. Amato is the Assistant Dean to Fuqua's Executive MBA Program. She wanted to report suspicious activity about one of the executive students. Ms, Vurimindi or "Vamsy" as he is called commutes to Duke on select weekends and stays at the R David Thomas Center and attends classes at Fuqua. Vamsy has been confronting classmates for apparently no reason confronting them saying, “you don't like me" or "Why are you talking about me or "Do you have a problem with me”. He has locked several students into these confrontations until they become visibly upset. These types of confrontations have also been occurring via emails. Most of the students Ms. Amato has talked to stated that because Vamsy is native born in India that most of these problems have been cultural misunderstandings. But on the same note the students are concerned and the behavior has begun to interrupt their ability to participate in the program. Another concern is one of the rumors that have been passed among some of the students about Vamsy telling someone that he carries a gun. When Ms. Amato attempts to identify who heard him say this and what was said the students all say that they heard it from some one else. She has yet to identify if this is a legitimate concern or just rumor. I gave Ms. Amato some guidance on the law and general crime prevention. I also offered our assistance with any administrative decision they make regarding Mr. Vurimindi to include officer presence, directed patrols, and trespass. She said she needed to talk to her senior administrator and would contact us back. I gave her a contact card. I checked for active warrants for Mr. Vurimindi and found negative results”. 35 Director, Management Communications Ctr, The Fuqua School of Business, Duke University 36 “Kathie, I'm in the lounge in London, and I am about to be called to board in a few minutes. I had quite a bit of contact with Vamsi as the program began for him. He spoke with me about help with English pronunciation, and he seemed to have quite a few issues with people skills. He said that in this country and even now , he has a problem with just going along with ideas that he does not believe in. He has not learned the skill of the "social white lie," he Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 33 of 125
    • Page - 34 - of 125 215. After Katherine Amato filed a police complaint against Plaintiff, on 19th January 2009, Katherine Amato called Defendant Peter Walton and enquired him about him saying to Defendant Nathaniel Hawkins that Plaintiff brought a gun onto Duke Campus. 216. On 19th January 2009, Defendant Peter Walton further lied and sensationalized his fabricated story and further implicated Plaintiff by false statements that Plaintiff told him that he is carrying a pistol in his coat37 ; Plaintiff told him that he don’t believe in US law; Plaintiff told him that Plaintiff thinks that he is above law, because he belongs to a high level social and political structure. says, and he has very frequent conflict with people in his family, in his business dealings, and perhaps on his team, though that aspect of this has not come up. I have not spoken with him in any substantial way in months. He seemed to think that the school should be a resource for him as an advisor for his real estate business dealings. I tried to make clear to him that such services were not part of the program. I gave him readings and offered counseling on the interpersonal skills, but I think he just got too busy. The last email I got from him was in April. I did not see any issues on his team (at least on the surface), but I would not be surprised if he had some. He seems to be under a lot of pressure to succeed in his business, and the stress gets to him. He is not that easy to understand, and he oscillates between blaming himself for his shortcomings and blaming others. That's what I know. I would be happy to reach out to him if there are issues. Regards, Mark” 37 “I spoke with Pete Walton today to try and learn more about whether or not Vamsi may have been bringing a weapon onto campus. Pete related an incident which occurred in either late September or October. Pete said he was walking outside and ran into Vamsi speaking with Eugene White. Pete said it was a very warm evening and Vamsi was wearing a very heavy coat, like a trench coat. Pete said he stopped to speak with Vamsi and Eugene and during the course of the conversation he asked Vamsi why he had on a heavy coat on such a warm evening. Vamsi responded that he was carrying a pistol in his coat. When Pete asked why he was carrying a pistol, Vamsi explained ("gave him a history lesson" was the phrase Pete used) that in India only individuals at a certain high level within the political and social structure were allowed to carry weapons and that he, Vamsi, fell into that group. He indicated he had carried a pistol when he was in India and was continuing to do so in the United States. When Pete asked him further if he was aware of US laws about carrying a concealed weapon, Vamsi indicated it did not matter and he was not concerned about those laws as he did not believe they applied to him. Pete and Vamsi engaged in a bit more conversation about weapons and how Vamsi needed to be obeying US laws as well as safety procedures with a weapon. Pete felt in this exchange Vamsi indicated an arrogance or air of superiority relative to US laws, as well as a relatively low knowledge about firearms and firearm safety. At this juncture, Pete ended the conversation and walked away. Pete did not actually see the pistol. Pete began the conversation with me by indicating that he is a "firearms enthusiast," who knows a great deal about weapons, the laws governing their use in the US, and the dangers of carrying a loaded weapon. Pete was dismayed by Vamsi's attitude about carrying a weapon, particularly when he is assuming it is loaded. I have sent an email to Eugene White to see if I can speak with him. Bill, based on what you heard from the Duke police, should I contact them and add this information to their report on file? Kathie” Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 34 of 125
    • Page - 35 - of 125 217. As soon, Katherine Amato called Defendant Peter Walton to gather more information about Plaintiff bringing a gun onto campus, Defendant Peter Walton and John Espey restarted discussion about guns and shooting range and encouraged Plaintiff to participate in the discussion. 218. Defendant Peter Walton without informing Plaintiff that Duke Administration called him and enquired him the alleged Plaintiff bringing a gun onto Duke campus, and restarted another discussion about guns and shooting range on 19th January 2009, by saying “Dave, Pete, and I went to the range this weekend. Let me just warn you ahead of time, if you are thinking of breaking into a house in the Charlotte area, I would recommend avoiding Pete's. The best shot of the day came when he put the gun in his non-shooting hand, moved the target 50 feet away, and in one shot put one right between the eyes.”; “Don’t let Espey fool you. His bullets are twice the size of mine and he uses hollow points; might have a problem finding your entire mid-section when he pulls the trigger.....lol. And, your right Scott, I have never cried, haha.” 219. After the fact, Plaintiff believe that the timing of Defendant Peter Walton starting original discussion about guns in October 2008 and restating discussion about the Guns in January 2009, is to create an impetus and alibi to file a complaint against Plaintiff with an intention to compel Duke to expel Plaintiff. 220. After, Defendant Peter Walton ended his encrypted message and after Plaintiff didn’t responded to Defendant Peter Walton’ discussion about guns and shooting range, on 21st January 2009, Katherine Amato called Eugene White and enquired him about the alleged complaint that Plaintiff bringing a weapon onto campus. 221. After the fact, Plaintiff suspicious about the timing of Katherine Amato calling Eugene White; Katherine Amato called Eugene White after Plaintiff didn’t respond to Defendant Peter Walton’ discussion about guns and shooting range. Katherine Amato could have spoke with Eugene White on 19th January 2009, that same day that she spoke with Defendant Peter Walton, but she waited until 21st January 2009. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 35 of 125
    • Page - 36 - of 125 222. Plaintiff believes that Katherine Amato waited till the time that Duke Administration that Plaintiff wouldn’t respond to Defendant Peter Walton’ discussion about guns and shooting range. 223. On 21st January 2009, in response to Katherine Amato’ enquiry, Eugene White recollected that the incident occurred in November 200838 and when Plaintiff and Eugene White are talking in the Duke Campus, Defendant Peter Walton joined them and asked Plaintiff that “Vamsi, you look like a hit man in that coat. Are you carrying a concealed weapon?". “In response, what appeared to be teasing comments started by Pete Walton, Vamsi in a very joking manner told to Peter Walton that he was carrying a concealed weapon inside the coat”. 224. Interestingly, Eugene White also didn’t disclose to Plaintiff that Katherine Amato called her and enquired about alleged complaint that Plaintiff bringing a weapon onto campus. 225. On 23rd January 2009, Plaintiff was interrogated by Bill Boulding, and during the interrogation, Bill Boulding characterized Plaintiff as a “as a risk” and compared Plaintiff with the Virginia Tech shooter that killed 32 people. 226. On 23rd January 2009, Plaintiff asked Bill Boulding why he is conveniently ignoring the fact that Plaintiff has been a target for the harassment by the defendants and ignoring the defendants who publicly discussed about the guns that they own and the size of the bullets 38 “I spoke with Eugene on Tuesday, about the conversation he participated in where Vamsi and Pete Walton discussed Vamsi carrying a pistol. Eugene's recollection was that the incident occurred in November, the weekend of Global graduation. The majority of the Weekend students were staying at the Washington Duke, but a small number of students (part of the Thursday night stay group) were staying in the Thomas Center. It was a per diem night and Eugene said he and Vamsi had just returned from eating at the noodle restaurant and were standing outside in the breezeway talking. While it was warm, it had been raining/threatening rain, so Vamsi had on a trench coat. When Pete came up to speak to them, he commented on Vamsi's coat, saying something along the lines of "Vamsi, you look like a hit man in that coat. Are you carrying a concealed weapon?" Vamsi responded, in what Eugene took to be a very joking manner, that he was carrying a concealed weapon inside the coat. Vamsi then went on to elaborate that he used to carry a pistol when he was in India. Eugene said that Vamsi repeated this statement on Saturday, still in a joking manner, that he was carrying a gun. Eugene feels very strongly that Vamsi was joking, in response to what appeared to be teasing comments started by Pete Walton. Eugene evidently knows Vamsi fairly well and indicated that because of the language and cultural differences between Vamsi and some of his classmates, he could he could see where someone would not understand that Vamsi was joking”. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 36 of 125
    • Page - 37 - of 125 that they like to use and how recently that they fired the guns; and could potentially pose more risk than Plaintiff. Nevertheless, Bill Boulding answer was vague and abrupt. 227. On 24th January 2009, the last day of the Term 3 and after Plaintiff has been interrogated by Bill Boulding, when Plaintiff walking towards the shuttle bus to airport, Defendant Moira Ringo purposefully approached Plaintiff and said that “this is the last trip for you to Durham, NC”. At that time, Plaintiff asked the Defendant Moira Ringo, “What you mean?” At that time, Defendant Moira Ringo response was vague, abrupt, and dismissive. 228. On 24th January 2009, to avoid Defendant Moira Ringo, Plaintiff jumped into Eugene White car and he took Plaintiff to a local Bar & Restaurant, where Plaintiff’ classmates usually hang- out. As soon, Plaintiff entering into the bar, Kevin Guisti approached Plaintiff and pulled off Plaintiff’ blazer and searched Plaintiff’ coat pockets and Kevin Guisti didn’t find a gun in Plaintiff’ coat pockets. 229. Immediately right at that moment, Douglas Bashar looking at Plaintiff and said that “He is lying” in front of the other classmates. At that time, Plaintiff stepped out of the Bar & Restaurant and called Douglas Bashar over phone and asked him, “Why do you think that I am lying?” However, Douglas Bashar was evasive and did not answer the Plaintiff’ question. 230. As soon as Term 3 final exams are over, In the first week of February 2009, Plaintiff asked Defendants Robert Ball, Robert Ross and Shana Keating to use Duke’ authorized software, because Defendants Robert Ball, Robert Ross and Shana Keating discarded all of the Plaintiff’ contributions by accusing Plaintiff plagiarized the course work and abused the non Duke software to record Plaintiff’ conversations. 231. Nevertheless, Defendants Robert Ball, Robert Ross and Shana Keating disregarded Plaintiff’ request and continue to discard Plaintiff’ contributions. At that time, Plaintiff suggested to discuss the team dynamics and to arrive an amicable solution to divide the work among the team members in the presence of Mark Brown. 232. Defendants Robert Ball, Robert Ross and Shana Keating refused to discuss with Mark Brown and continued to trash Plaintiff’ contributions. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 37 of 125
    • Page - 38 - of 125 233. On 22nd February 2009, Plaintiff contacted Mark Brown via email39 and copied his email to Defendants Robert Ball, Robert Ross and Shana Keating. In his email Plaintiff clearly told to Mark Brown he failed to resolve logistic and administrative issues through consensus within his team and need his intervention. 234. On 23rd February 2009, Defendant Shana Keating contacted Mark Brown without copying to Plaintiff and told him that she begun documenting her concerns along with Defendants Robert Ball and Robert Ross concerns, about Plaintiff’ contributions and performance and will send him a document after Defendants Robert Ball and Robert Ross agrees with her. 235. On 23rd February 2009, Defendant Shana Keating, Robert Ball and Robert Ross prepared six pages of atrocious lies with hatred abhorrence and abomination against Plaintiff saying that they don’t feel comfortable with Plaintiff’ quality of work and cited frivolous reasons for their discriminatory40 attitude towards Plaintiff and send to Mark Brown without copying Plaintiff. 39 “Dear Mark Brown, This is further to our last meeting during the beginning of Term #02, I am writing this email to setup some time to talk to you tomorrow (Monday, 22nd February 2008) or any other time convenient for you. Now I am in Term # 04 and in a different team. I could not able to resolve logistic and administrative issues through consensus within my team. The issues are: (1) Using Fuqua's platform and online team boards for communication (email and team meeting telephone calls) and storage of the documents. (2) Work division between the team members and leading the team assignments. (3) Communication process and approach for tackling each assignment. When it would be possible for you to have an initial conversation?” 40 “Hi Mark, This letter is being submitted to you by Robert Ross, Bobby Ball, and Shan a Keating. We are in Section 1, Team 2 of the 2009 Weekend EMBA program. Our team also includes Navneet Latawa and Vamsi Vurimindi; we do not speak on behalf of Navneet or Vamsi in this letter. We are writing to address some concerns we are having with our team dynamics. There is a disconnect between Vamsi Vurimindi and the rest of the team. We tried solving our issues by adhering to our initial team charter (attached). When that failed, we made some compromises and agreed upon a revised team charter (also attached). This did not work and now we are soliciting your help. The main points of conflict for Vamsi are (1) using Centra voice, (2) work roles/responsibilities of team members, and (3) date/time of team calls. However, we believe that these are minor issues on which we can compromise (and have done so in the revised team charter). However, the real underlying issues for the rest of the team are Vamsi's punctuality, work ethic, quality of work, and moral character. …. (4) Vamsi wants a team lead for each assignment … Bottom line: in our opinions, Vamsi as not a good team lead. This is not a judgment, but rather an observation. As a result, we decided to work together in a manner that draws upon our strengths, so we returned to the routine that worked before and that made the best use of everyone's skills. (1) As just discussed, Vamsi is inflexible and unwilling to compromise. If we do not proceed in the manner he desires, he complains or refuses to participate. At the beginning of Term 2, we established a loose team charter that has been reviewed at least two times since. We have met as a team to discuss these issues; we leave these meetings with a sense of consensus (usually with compromise) and Vamsi brings up issues again at a later date. He continues to re-open resolved issues Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 38 of 125
    • Page - 39 - of 125 that did not result in his first choice resolution. In addition to re-opening resolved team logistics, Vamsi frequently re-opens case concepts. On case assignments, Vamsi frequently sends comments on the day of or the day before the case is due. His comments are often irrelevant to the final submission and serve as a distraction. He is frustrated because his ideas aren't integrated, but others are frustrated because his ideas are not only late, but inconsistent with the direction of the paper. Vamsi has talked to Robert a few times about this issue and Robert's repeated response has been, "Vamsi, you are correct, we have not included your comments because they are very late and not relevant to our team's write-up. The time for divergent thinking and ideas was prior to team consensus." We delve into this theme further in several of the items below. (2) Vamsi is not a team player. He did not participate in 4-5 consecutive team calls in November/December. He sited the brain cancer issue which was then resolved. Since then, his attendance has been consistent for the most part, although he did fall asleep and snore through the last half of a 30 minute team call. (3) When Vamsi does participate in our calls, he does 50% or more of the talking. Most of the talking from other people is done to bring him back on track or debate the validity of his points, instead of discussing the case directly. (4) Vamsi's contributions are not valuable. Vamsi occasionally will do data analysis that is good for helping us consider different angles and to help us frame the problem, although we have never directly used any of his data analysis. Please know that we do not fault him for trying and getting the wrong answer. I do that myself and I appreciate that he provides input that helps us consider other angles. However, we do not feel comfortable with the quality of his work in general. Most often this results from examining the wrong question. The TMH case is the one case that Vamsi provided the most input. We have documentation of his input. It was not at all focused and concentrated on many outside issues, rather than the questions being asked. Most of it was not used in our final analysis and we consider his contributions of little to no worth. We can share this documentation with you. (5) When Vamsi does provide valuable input, it is often late. Most of his input is sent late Wednesday night or early Thursday morning before the Friday on which the assignment is due. At this point, the case has already been resolved (right or wrong) and we are soliciting suggestions to polish the final draft, not to change the direction of our response. As a result, Vamsi's input is ignored or someone has to spend work or sleep time incorporating Vamsi's suggestions. Very little of Vamsi's work (if any) has ever been used in the final versions of our assignments. (6) Vamsi often does not provide analysis and rarely provides insightful analysis. Instead, Vamsi will send dozens of links to articles, but with no analysis or explanation of the value of the article. Case in point: we did an economic analysis on the automotive industry bailout for our Econ final project in Term 3. At the beginning of the project, we all pulled information about the industry from various sources and then shared our sources and analysis of important facts/ideas from each source. We then created our final analysis in our own words, citing facts from those various sources. Vamsi's contribution was to send links with no analysis of his own, right up to the week the assignment was due. In one case, he added his "analysis" directly to one of our near-final drafts of the paper and submitted it to the team at 6:25 a.m. on the day the final paper was due. Because he submitted his contribution so late, I did not open his email until after the paper had been submitted. I was immediately concerned with his "contribution." The part that raised the red flag is that the writing did not match Vamsi's typical writing style. I googled a sentence and matched it perfectly with an article online. I realized that he had copied an article word for word into our working draft of the paper and submitted it to us without clarifying that this was not his work. He never claimed the work as his own, but he never specifically stated that the work was not his own. Fortunately, we did not use his "contribution" so we are confident that our paper did not plagiarize any articles. In the meantime (after the term), I asked him via email about his contribution. He made it very clear at that time that he had obtained the information from another source. He also offered an explanation that he was too tired to do his own analysis. This raises a lot of red flags about his contributions moving forward and concerns us about his selected shortcuts when pressed for time. I have documentation of this as well, including my follow up response on citing sources. (7) In the meantime, we are concerned about Vamsi's moral character. We recognize that we walk a fine line here and do not feel comfortable casting stones. However, Vamsi has openly discussed the "hanky panky" and "bribing city hall" and the "goons" that are all part of his daily business conduct. We refer only to gossip here, but we have heard about verbal assaults that Vamsi has made on classmates and have heard that he carries weapons illegally on campus. We recognize this is hearsay on our part, so we leave this to you to confirm with school officials and consider this a closed topic for ourselves moving forward. Our Attempts at Resolution In response to all the concerns we have about Vamsi, we have taken several steps. We all have talked to Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 39 of 125
    • Page - 40 - of 125 236. On 24th February 2009, after Defendants Shana Keating, Robert Ball and Robert Ross send six pages of atrocious lies with hatred abhorrence and abomination against Plaintiff, Mark Brown responded to Defendants Shana Keating, Robert Ball and Robert Ross saying, “Thanks, guys. I'll study this and be ready for our discussion tomorrow evening at 5:30. Hang in there. Rumor has it that graduation will actually happen later this year” 237. Plaintiff believe that Mark Brown is telling Defendants Shana Keating, Robert Ball and Robert Ross that, “Rumor has it that graduation will actually happen later this year” implying that Plaintiff, and Defendants Shana Keating, Robert Ball and Robert Ross will all be graduating later this year. 238. On 24th February 2009 at between 7:00 PM and 9:00 PM, Plaintiff has participated in a telephone conference call with three Defendants Robert Ball, Robert Ross and Shana Keating and discussed about a team project that is shortly coming due in next two weeks time. 239. An hour after the telephone conference call, on 24th February 2009 at 10:04 PM, Defendant Robert Ross wrote one full page atrocious lies41 with hatred abhorrence and abomination Vamsi as a team and in one-on-one conversations about his absences from our calls or lack of contribution. We have scheduled team meetings at Fuqua with Vamsi and then at the last minute, he is not able to attend. Bobby, Robert, and I have all talked individually about how we can work better with Vamsi. We all agree that everyone has something of value to offer the team and we have searched for Vamsi's value-add with no success. We have tried pulling value from him in different ways. We have tasked him as a team lead. We have requested data analysis. We know he likes politics and industry analysis, so we tried to excite him about contributing to the Detroit bailout project. We have had no success in any of these. In summary, our team recognizes that we worked most efficiently when Vamsi was not participating. We spend more time and have poorer results when Vamsi contributes, which leads us to consider him a negative contribution to the team. We look forward to discussing with you in more detail and determining our options for handling this moving forward. We appreciate your prompt responses this week and we especially appreciate that you are giving us your free time during the evenings to work with us.” 41 “Barnes and Harold, This evening on a team call, one of my teammates, Vamsi Vurimindi, discussed actions that may have been in violation of the Honor Code. During our discussion about the National Cranberry Case, he said something like: "This case is a very popular case. It's not new. A lot of schools have used it. When I goggled the case ...” “No one on the call responded to his comment and after about 15 seconds of silence one of us (maybe me) redirected the conversation. After the case discussion was complete, with all of my team members still on the call, I told this person that I was not comfortable with his actions. I noted that I had not recently read the letter of the Honor Code, but was certain that his actions were in violation of the spirit of the Honor Code. Another team member clarified that seeking outside information for cases is not allowed and should not be done going forward. The offending team member stated that he did not have violating the Honor Code on his mind when he was looking for information about the case. He continued on to say that this is an easy case and it’s just not that complicated. (I don't know what the value of that last statement was.) In and of itself, my team member's action was at a minimum irresponsible. However, this is not the first time that he has skirted this moral line. During last term he put me in a compromising situation with one of our papers by adding content to a draft of our paper without having Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 40 of 125
    • Page - 41 - of 125 against Plaintiff to Defendant Barnes Barton, and John Gallagher and Harold saying that referring to Plaintiff as , “he said something like: "This case is a very popular case. It's not new. A lot of schools have used it. When I goggled the case ...” and filed an honor code violation against Plaintiff by accusing Plaintiff’ google’ed the case. 240. After the fact, based on the Duke discovery it is clear that Defendants Shana Keating, Robert Ball and Robert Ross don’t want Plaintiff to graduate and filed frivolous honor code violations against Plaintiff. 241. Approximately an hour later on 24th February 2009 at 11:43 PM, Defendant Barnes Barton42 wrote an email to John Gallagher by stating that from Defendant Robert Ross alleged description, there is enough merit to warrant a thorough investigation into alleged honor code violation against Plaintiff. 242. On 25th February 2009, Defendant Robert Ball, wrote an email to Defendant Robert Ross and added another lie43 with hatred abhorrence and abomination against Plaintiff by saying that Plaintiff also stated that he couldn't find any answers to our questions when he googled it and it implies that he was looked for the answers. cited the source. The content was not relevant to the direction of our paper, and I was concerned with the authorship of the writing so I simply deleted his contribution and moved on. Another team member confronted him about this issue and explained that it could have lead to plagiarism. He defended his actions and stated that he wasn't trying to plagiarize. I'm not sure if these actions meet the threshold of an investigation, but given tonight's comments, I feel that it is necessary that I bring this forward. Also, my team has been in contact with Mark Brown and will be meeting with him telephonically over the next week and in person the next time we are on campus. The central reason for meeting is this team member's performance, actions, and "moral character." Please be sure to coordinate any actions that you deem necessary with Mark Brown. While I am willing to work without this teammate, he has already wasted enough of my time that I am fearful of a combustible situation that would be a further drag on my and the rest of my team's time. If you would like to speak to me about this matter, I can be reached on my cell phone (919-601-3234). I am often up till 1 am, and am willing to take calls later in the evening if it suits your schedule.” 42 “John, I am available at any time to talk about Robert's concern, especially since it seems, from the description below, to have enough merit to warrant a thorough investigation. Please let Harold and me know when you would like to discuss the process after receiving such a concern. If a phone call would be easier, my cell is 281-515-5715, office 713-458-3956. Thanks, Barnes” 43 “Robert, I agree. He also said that he couldn't find any answers to our questions when he googled it...implying that he was looking for the answers. If Barnes contacts you, I'd be glad to talk to him as well. Bobby.” Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 41 of 125
    • Page - 42 - of 125 243. On 25th February 2009, Harold Hong writes an email44 to Defendant Robert Ross and thanked him for bringing up this concern and in addition he mentioned “It looks like your team has been put into an awkward position several times regarding the honor code”. 244. Harold Hong’ email conforming that Defendants Robert Ball, Robert Ross and Shana Keating filed many other Honor Code Violations against Plaintiff, and judiciary committee must have dismissed prior to a formal hearing and crafted a new Duke Honor Code complaint against Plaintiff with enough teeth to maul, batter and lacerate Plaintiff. 245. On 25th February 2009, after Defendant Barnes Barton asked John Gallagher for a thorough investigation, John Gallagher write an email45 to Defendants Robert Ross and Barnes Barton and told them that he will gather the necessary statements and relevant evidence in order to conduct an investigation and if investigation finds that a formal charges should be filed, then Judicial Board Chairman will be informed and a formal hearing will be conducted. And specifically asked Defendants Robert Ross not to reveal or discuss the investigation with others, in order to protect the rights and privacy of all individuals involved. 246. On 25th February 2009, John Gallagher wrote a separate email to Defendant Robert Ross and asked additional information regarding his honor code violation complaint against 44 Hi Robert Thanks for bringing up this concern. It looks like your team has been put into an awkward position several times regarding the honor code. I will also be in contact with Alaina this morning and I will get back to you and Barnes ASAP regarding what steps need to be taken next. Harold” 45 “Robert: Thank you for bringing this matter to my attention. You followed the process clearly and I appreciate your having brought it forward. The process from here forward is very clear. It is laid out unambiguously in the Fuqua Honor Code, which can be found on line at: http://www.fugua.duke.edu/about/honor code/. I do not have discretion in this matter, which is as it should be. I will appoint two students from the program to assist me in the investigation phase of the process. Their identity will be kept anonymous. I will gather the necessary statements and relevant evidence in order to conduct the investigation. If the finding of the investigation is that formal charges should be filed, the Judicial Board Chairman will be informed and a formal hearing will be conducted. If the finding of the investigation is that there will be formal charges files, the entire matter is simply dropped. As I am certain you understand, all parties involved in the investigation phase are bound by strict confidentiality. You may not reveal or discuss the investigation with others. I believe the process is very well designed to insure a fair hearing of the facts involved and to come to an appropriate conclusion. We are bound by confidentiality in order to protect the rights and privacy of all individuals involved. The circulation of rumors can be highly damaging and difficult to address. At this point I will turn to the task of identifying to students to aid with the investigation. All of you will very likely experience "radio silence" as this process moves forward. Please do not interpret this as anything other than an intentionally quiet phase of activity. If you or anyone involved has any questions about the process going forward, please do not hesitate to ask me and I will be more than happy to resolve any questions and address any concerns. Thank you again for your help in this matter. jg” Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 42 of 125
    • Page - 43 - of 125 Plaintiff asking him to clarify whether he is filing two honor code complaints46 or one honor code complaint against Plaintiff, because Defendant Robert Ross raised an issue with Plaintiff’ omission of citation of sources in Macro Economics paper. 247. On 25th February 2009, John Gallagher wrote a separate email to Professor Pranab Majumdar and explained him about the Duke’ Honor Code violation investigation against Plaintiff and asked Professor Pranab Majumdar to clarify him about his instructions47 to complete the team based assignment. 46 “Robert: I wrote you in a separate e-mail in which I included Harold and Barnes. Again, I appreciate your bringing this forward. I am writing to ask you for some additional information. Once we have student investigators appointed, we will begin pulling together the statements and information required to conduct the investigation. So, I may need to come back to you at some point in the future for additional information. But, in the interim, there are a couple of details that I know will be helpful to the process. Here are some details I would like to have filled in if you can: 1) Can you tell me the course and the case involved? 2) Can you tell me what instructions, if any, you received from the instructor regarding the use of outside resources? What was your understanding about what was and was not permissible, and how did you arrive at that understanding? I note that you say "Another team member clarified that seeking outside information for cases is not allowed and should not be done going forward." I just need to know from your perspective if this case is covered under a blanket program-level restriction on the use of outside resources, or if the course/instructor addressed this issue in any specific way. 3) I assume that the previous incident you raised, regarding the citation of sources in a paper is not being raised at this point as a potential violation, but rather as background information to illustrate some of the source of your concern. As I read your message, you are specifically raising the concern that this student searched for and used outside information about this case. As I read your message, I believe that it is this latest incident that I/we should be focusing on and that the other is background or contextual information. Is that right? Again, I appreciate your help in keeping this investigation strictly confidential. If you have any questions or concerns about the process going forward, please just contact me. jg” 47 “Pranab: I am sorry to say that a student has raised a question about a possible Fuqua Honor Code violation in your Weekend course. The Fuqua School Honor Code requires that I conduct an investigation into the matter, and I am initiating that process. As you may know, when an issue such as this is raised, the first phase is investigatory. If the investigation does not seem to warrant the case going forward, the matter is dropped. If it does require a formal hearing, then the case moves to the Judicial Board. I am only in the preliminary phase of trying to determine whether or not there is grounds for a formal hearing. Please consider my inquiry of you to be confidential. It would be harmful for any information or rumors to begin to spread. Everyone involved in the investigation phase must operate under strict confidentiality. Now - with all of that build up, the truth of the matter is that I will very likely only need to contact you this one time, as I only have one real question of you. However, there may be a need for me to return with a clarifying question at some later date. The accusation is that a student in your Weekend course has used outside resources (a search using Google) to address a team-based case assignment. At this point, I need to determine what, if anything, you have said or not said in regard to the use of outside resources in this circumstance. Have you said or did you include any written reference to the use of outside materials in the completing of this team-based case assignment? What understanding do you believe students have in this regard? Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 43 of 125
    • Page - 44 - of 125 248. Immediately, on 25th February 2009, Professor Pranab Majumdar wrote back to John Gallagher and told to John Gallagher that he didn’t specifically said that internet searches are prohibited, but still he would consider48 Plaintiff violated the spirit of Duke Honor Code. 249. On 27th February 2009, John Gallagher wrote an email to Plaintiff and asked Plaintiff when it would be convenient for Plaintiff to talk49 , without saying anything about the Defendant Robert Ross honor code violation. 250. Immediately, on 27th February 2009, without knowing the underlying reason for John Gallagher’ email, Plaintiff wrote back to John Gallagher and asked him to tell him about the agenda that he would like to accomplish50 at the end of the telephone call.” 251. While, Plaintiff not knowing the reason for John Gallagher’ email request for time to talk, on 1st March 2009, Defendants Robert Ross, Robert ball and Shana Keating submitted case As you can tell, one of the things I need to weigh is the extent to which searching for answers and outside information on the case is clearly, or not-so-clearly delineated as a boundary. Anything you can contribute to resolve that question will be helpful. If you would like to talk with me about any aspect of this process, I am very happy to talk with you. All the best, and thanks for your help. John Gallagher, Associate Dean, Executive MBA Programs” 48 “Ah well John, what has happened has happened. I just searched Google, and the first one is an MIT lecture note, which pretty much gives away the crux of the case solution. Here is a part of what I wrote in the syllabus (I also pointed it out in the first class, without actually reading it out): "You may not reference notes from, or exchange information with, students from previous years (in any of Fuqua's MBA programs-WEMBA, daytime, Cross- Continent, or GEMBA). This includes copies of exams, handouts, lecture notes, notes taken in class, or study guides of any type. Failure to adhere to any of these requirements constitutes a violation of the Honor Code. If there is any question as to whether an activity is or is not permissible (in this class) under the Honor Code, consult the professor prior to undertaking the activity." While it does not specifically refer to internet searches, the spirit of the statement is clear, and I would consider it a violation. Thanks, and regards, Pranab” 49 “Vamsi: I hope you are doing well. I would like to have an opportunity to talk with you at your convenience. Is it possible that you would be free to speak with me sometime on Monday? There is a matter that has come up and I would like to have a chance to speak with you rather than just write an e-mail message. At the moment, I can be free anytime on Monday. So, if that will work for you, please just suggest a good time for me to call and give me a number where I can reach you. All the best, Jg” 50 Dear Dean Gallagher, Thank you for the email. Two Deans in one month! had an exciting lunch with Dean Blair Shepherd, who is a very knowledgeable and gracious host. In order to manage the time you need with the hectic work schedule, it would be of value if you could please say what is the agenda and how much time you want and what is the right time for the call?” Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 44 of 125
    • Page - 45 - of 125 write-up without Plaintiff’ name and falsely accused51 Plaintiff didn’t do anything towards the Duke course case write-up. 252. On 1st March 2009, Plaintiff was dismayed with Defendants Robert Ross, Robert ball and Shana Keating’ email, and responded with facts52 to show his contributions and work towards the course project. 51 “Team, As we discussed and agreed this morning, I've submitted the final write up for our NCC without Vamsi's name on the assignment. Overall, I think the four of us put in a pretty good effort and did a pretty good job on this case. We learned a lot through our discussion and analysis. However, as I was spending my Saturday afternoon completing this assignment and seeing and enduring the consequence of Vamsi not having met his deadline(s) I have become quite angry. For the record -I AM MAD. Friday night, Shana and I spent hours working on the final write up without the benefit of the cost analysis having been completed. It was due at noon, but we were told at 6pm that it wasn't done and that it would be done later that night. The next morning at 9 am at our (what should have been a review of the final product) meeting, we still didn't have anything from Vamsi, not even an email update - he didn't even come to the call on time! So after reviewing what we had, Bobby provided a quick cost analysis that drove what we submitted. The downside is that it didn't get much of a review and consequently was a first cut effort with no opportunity for team review. (Individually good, but not at the level our team can produce.) So after our call Shana did some editing and it all comes to me to wrap up with about 12 hours to go before the deadline on a SATURDAY where I had commitments that I had to partially sacrifice. (I sacrificed some of them and the team suffered some because I didn't sacrifice all of them.) So, as I am reviewing the "full solution" for the FIRST time, ideas and questions come to mind. I finessed the paper to defend our write up, but we missed out on some of the analysis because we faultily relied on a team mate that didn't deliver in time to matter. So, I'm ticked and frustrated that our time LEARNING how to function well and teach each other how to attack and interpret problems has been spent dealing with this spat that we're in now. Vamsi - I am one of the most patient people I know, but your shenanigans are testing my resolve. I can't say that my patience is all gone, but you have worn it extremely thin. The ball is in your court to convince me why I should rely on you, or even bother working with you at all. I will not fault you if you choose not to try to earn back respect from your teammates. I think it is a j ob not worth pursuing for you. The likelihood of being successful is slim. My personal sense is that others on our team are more frustrated with your actions than I am. You've dug a trench and you don't have much time to correct it. You should spend your time working on your own, doing your thing, learning your way, on your schedule and let the rest of the team deal with ourselves. The sad thing is that you do have something to contribute to the team. You have a perspective and an insight that can be valuable. You're just not delivering it; at least not in a way that is working. However, because I respect you and I haven't lost all faith in you, I'll be there on Friday and will give you, Mark Brown, and the rest of the team everything I've got. – Robert” 52 “Team, It was very difficult to understand what Robert is upset about with his use of colloquial expressions. Because of being accused of doing no work for this project or substandard work, I would like to provide the team some facts and figures that might lead to the truth about this matter. The following is a list of work I performed for this case history: 1) Read the case and supporting material supplied by professor 2) Participated in four team conference calls - giving ideas, challenging others ideas, providing facts from the case 3) Communicated with the professor to clarify whether the case is about flow or a batch process 4) Created a new flow diagram for the case to replace the flow diagram prepared by Navaneeth as per Bobby and Robert's suggestion. 5) Case data entered into excel data sheet Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 45 of 125
    • Page - 46 - of 125 253. On 2nd March 2009, John Gallagher after Defendants Robert Ross, Robert ball and Shana Keating removed Plaintiff’ name from the course work and responded to Plaintiff’ 27th February 2009 email and told him that there is an honor code violation complaint53 was filed against you and asked Plaintiff to call him immediately. 254. On 2nd March 2009, Plaintiff was shocked with the honor code violation complaint and immediately wrote back to John Gallagher and told him that it is an ultimate insult by accusing him of an honor code violation and explained the abusive conduct and behavior54 of Defendants Robert Ross, Robert ball and Shana Keating towards Plaintiff. 6) Applied macros, formulas and calculations for the excel data sheet 7) Prepared cost analysis for different situations. 8) Approximately 25 hours spent on this case personally. In addition have been requesting that team consider changes to the leadership structure in order to allow all the team members to have a change to experience leadership of the team. For example while Shana Keating is the best writer because of her English back ground, it might be a value to Shana to try out a different role and for me to try a different role as well. Another example is that perhaps that it would be a benefit to Robert to be part of a team where someone else leads the team and close the case. He might experience a different leadership style than an authoritarian style. Perhaps Navaneeth or myself get the case writing experience. Perhaps Bobby would like to try Team leader roll for himself. As you might notice from my comments here, that I have spent even additional time thinking about the team talents and considering where the team members might advance their skills. Also the time spent to communicate with Mark and outside counsel about the team communication is not included in the above hours.” 53 “Vamsi: You can call me anytime between 3 and 4:30. An issue has come up regarding the Honor Code and I want to talk with you about it. I know that sounds alarming, but I do not want you to be worried about it. When a question like this comes up the Honor Code requires that I talk to the individuals involved and gather some facts for review. Many times this is nothing more than a misunderstanding that is cleared up quickly. That said, it is necessary for us to talk about it and I appreciate your time. You can just call my desk phone (919- 660-7641) and it will forward to my cell phone. I am working from home today - Duke is actually closed due to the weather conditions. I look forward to talking with you. Jg” 54 “Dear Dean Gallagher, It is alarming to here this from you, because Robert Ross threatened this on a team call when I mentioned there being a lot of information about this case history - none of which was used by on the work of the case. Been having significant trouble with Robert who has made himself for all the case work and now is of course making the ultimate insult by accusing me of an honor code violation. Been working with Mark Brown to manage this issue and have been trying to keep from reporting Robert as prejudice. Will forward you the emails working with mark brown and you can have the back ground information. My feeling is that as result of his prejudice he has under estimated my ability to perform the complex work that I have been doing on my own. Would have preferred to have conversations with you about how the program and duke could benefit more from my powerful history in India. Perhaps you and i should take the 20 minutes for you to hear my history from India. There, in spite of beatings, threats and police harassment I successfully steered the university management to eliminate their self interest quotas for upper cast students. This quota was then applied to lower cast students who Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 46 of 125
    • Page - 47 - of 125 255. On 2nd March 2009, after Plaintiff had a telephonic conversation, John Gallagher wrote and email and asked55 to furnish answers to his questions regarding honor code violation. 256. On 2nd March 2009, immediately Plaintiff responded to John Gallagher’ each and every question and affirmatively denied56 the false honor code violation accusations. are now able to get more number of seats in the colleges. I abide the honor code under even in sever conditions in India and would never do anything to jeopardise my own personal money investment for my MBA.” 55 “Vamsi: Thank you for calling and talking with me today. As we discussed, a student raised a question regarding a statement you made and the Fuqua School Honor Code. As you may know, I do not have any discression in the matter, I must investigate. Our conversation was very helpful to me. However, I must ask you to respond to a couple of questions so I have something in writing. As we discussed, the question was based on a statement that you may have made during a team meeting discussing a case in your operations course. I do not have an exact quote, but the student who brought this matter to my attention thought you said something about having done a web search on the case and that you were looking for answers or information about the case on the web. I have not spoken with the student or with the instructor. So, I do not know if looking for outside information is allowed or not allowed on this assignment. But, if you could please just tell me in your own words - 1) What do you remember saying during this team meeting about searching for outside information on this case? 2) Did you search for outside information on this case? 3) Did you bring any outside information to the team as part of the discussion of this case and its solution? 4) Is there anything else you can add that would help clear up what you did and did not do in terms of searching for and using outside information in working on this case? 56 1 What do you remember saying during this team meeting about searching for outside information on this case? Ans: I do not exactly remember what I said in a team meeting, however I remember the idea was to be conversational and to give some encouragement to the team. The case was simple and straight forward and been administered by several business schools, so I wanted to break up some of the tension among the team members with this encouragement. 2 Did you search for outside information on this case? Ans: No 3 Did you bring any outside information to the team as part of the discussion of this case and its solution? Ans: Yes, in one of the early team meetings, I have inferred that the process in the case can be completed in a batch process, because the process flow is similar to the pharmaceutical formulation unit that I have co- promoted in Hyderabad, AP, India. After I have obtained clarifications from Professor Pranab Majumdar regarding the process in the case should be inferred as a flow, I have corrected my spread sheet model. In the later team meetings, I have contradicted with the opinions expressed by Robert Ross and Robert Ball (Bobby) that each truck contain 70% wet and 30% dry berries and mentioned about my experience with importing and unloading the coal from the rail racks at thermal power stations. 4 Is there anything else you can add that would help clear up what you did and did not do in terms of searching for and using outside information in working on this case? Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 47 of 125
    • Page - 48 - of 125 257. On 4th March 2009, after Plaintiff responded to John Gallagher under duress, Plaintiff wrote an email to Professor Pranab Majumdar, and told him about Defendants Robert ball, Robert Ross and Shana Keating as to how they are treating and marginalizing Plaintiff in his team and further took liberty to remove Plaintiff’ name from the team project, against Duke’ team charter. 258. In addition, Plaintiff told to Professor Pranab Majumdar that Defendants Robert ball, Robert Ross and Shana Keating in earlier Term -3 also threatened Plaintiff to remove Plaintiff’ name from the course assignments. 259. In addition, at that time, Plaintiff reminded Professor Pranab Majumdar that his course team assignment weigh 25% towards total course grading, hence it is extremely important to Plaintiff to have his name on the team assignment, because Plaintiff worked hard and contributed to the case write-up. 260. In addition, in the alternative if Professor Pranab Majumdar cant’ make Defendants Robert ball, Robert Ross and Shana Keating to include Plaintiff name in the course project, Plaintiff asked permission to submit a separate case write-up. Nevertheless, Professor Pranab Majumdar didn’t reply to Plaintiff’ request. 261. Because Professor Pranab Majumdar didn’t reply, Plaintiff contacted John Gallagher and told him that Defendants Robert ball, Robert Ross and Shana Keating are ganging up against him by unilaterally removing Plaintiff’ name from the team assignment, and are refused to incorporate Plaintiff’ suggestions. Ans: I have direct on hands experience on numerous occasions in my business venture Roofers Plastics Pvt Ltd, a manufacturing unit of bubble warp for packing electronic equipment(s) and that this case is straight forward that there is no reason to seek outside information. Why should I risk my high value education, when I had a feeling that the work is not going to be included in the final case writeup? Sadly I feel that reporting this kind of off-handed conversational comments as an honor code violation is further evidence that the team is severely distressed, dysfunctional and in an unproductive state of mind. I will share this information with Mr. Mark Brown. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 48 of 125
    • Page - 49 - of 125 262. In addition, Plaintiff told to John Gallagher that he isn’t in a position to spend unlimited amount of time to convince Defendants Robert ball, Robert Ross and Shana Keating and asked permission to submit case work separately to Professor Pranab Majumdar. 263. In response John Gallagher told to Plaintiff, that there is no provision for students to complete team assignments individually and Plaintiff cannot just choose to work on his own and Plaintiff’ team cannot just choose to work without Plaintiff. 264. After, Plaintiff contacted Professor Pranab Majumdar, on 4th March 2009, Defendant Robert Ross responded to John Gallagher’ 25th February 2009 email request of additional information about his honor code violation and further accused57 Plaintiff with hatred abhorrence and abomination against Plaintiff by saying, “To be honest with you, his pattern has made me (and I can specifically quote another teammate on this) wonder what else he has cheated?” 57 “John, I apologize for taking so long to get back to you on this matter. Please do not misinterpret my delay as a reflection of the degree of importance that I put on this issue. In fact, it is the opposite. Our honor code and the integrity our program is very important to me. If you need to contact me again, email is fine, but a phone call is almost always faster. My cell phone number is 919-601-3234 and my work number is 919-678-6566. Answers to the questions you posed: 1) Operations Management (370W) - National Cranberry Cooperative. 2) My working understanding of what is permissible was based on the course syllabus and an expectation of consistency with the norms of our program. Exerts from the course syllabus (underlining emphasis mine):  Honor Code: The Fuqua School Honor Code will be strictly enforced in this class. It is each student's responsibility to understand and abide by the Honor Code as it applies to each class activity. Asking anyone other than the professor to interpret a question on the second assignment or an exam is a violation of the Honor Code. For the case analysis, all work is to be done by your team-team members may not discuss or exchange information regarding the case analysis with members of other teams. You may not reference notes from, or exchange information with, students from previous years (in any of Fuqua's MBA programs- WEMBA, daytime, CrossContinent, or GEMBA). This includes copies of exams, handouts, lecture notes, notes taken in class, or study guides of any type. Failure to adhere to any of these requirements constitutes a violation of the Honor Code. If there is any question as to whether an activity is or is not permissible (in this class) under the Honor Code, consult the professor prior to undertaking the activity.  While the syllabus did not explicitly state that we cannot google answers to the case question, I believe that the message is clear. Vamsi made a comment that he couldn't find any answers to our questions when he googled it.. .implying that he was looking for the answers. 3) You are correct in your interpretation. I have discussed the older incident with another one of my teammates and we honestly feel that we kept it from being an honor code violation by not allowing it to come into our macro economics paper. The reason that the background information is relevant is that it shows a pattern of action where Vamsi skirts the limits of plagiarism and the Honor Code. To be honest with you, his pattern has made me (and I can specifically quote another teammate on this) wonder what else he has cheated?” Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 49 of 125
    • Page - 50 - of 125 265. Plaintiff believe that Professor Pranab Majumdar with Defendants Robert ball, Robert Ross and Shana Keating had exchanged information about Plaintiff’ position about the alleged honor code violation, and after Plaintiff begins to pursue Professor Pranab Majumdar to submit a separate case write-up, Professor Pranab Majumdar intimated Plaintiff’ communication with him to Defendant Robert Ross and that triggered a quick response from Defendant Robert Ross with additional accusations against Plaintiff. 266. Immediately, next day on 5th March 2009, Wyeth terminated Plaintiff’ consulting assignment and informed to the Plaintiff’ classmates about the termination of Plaintiff’ consulting assignment. 267. On 6th March 2009, while Plaintiff is leaving Professor Pranab Majumdar’ class for a tea break, Pratibhash Chattopadhyay shouted at Plaintiff, as “every tom dick, harry wants to be leaders, you can’t run even a small restaurant” while several classmates are watching. At that time, Plaintiff asked Professor Pranab Majumdar as to why he is allowing Pratibhash Chattopadhyay making derogatory remarks against Plaintiff in his class. Nevertheless, Professor Pranab Majumdar asked Plaintiff to keep quiet, without saying anything to Pratibhash Chattopadhyay. 268. After the fact, it is clear that after Defendants Robert ball, Robert Ross and Shana Keating filed an honor code violation against Plaintiff; Professor Pranab Majumdar made the Plaintiff as an object of ridicule during his lecturers and made derogatory jokes about Plaintiff. This is a violation to Duke Policy. 269. In addition, Professor Pranab Majumdar in one class, Professor Pranab Majumdar publically announced that Plaintiff is taking pills for the blood circulation to the brain, implying that Plaintiff is taking psychiatric drugs. 270. In addition, Professor Pranab Majumdar in the class told to other students, while looking at the Plaintiff, that students don’t belong to this program is here, implying that Plaintiff don’t eligible to get into Duke. 271. At that time, when Plaintiff asked Professor Pranab Majumdar, why he is making insinuating comments implying that Plaintiff isn’t eligible to get into Duke, while looking at Plaintiff? In Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 50 of 125
    • Page - 51 - of 125 response, Professor Pranab Majumdar told to Plaintiff, that he is just joking. This is a violation to Duke Policy. 272. Subsequently, few days after Professor Pranab Majumdar’ public statements about Plaintiff eligibility to get into Duke, on 11th March 2009, John Gallagher wrote an email to Defendants Robert Ball, Shana Keating and Navaneeth Latawa and asked them to furnish more details surrounding the honor code violation58 against Plaintiff. 58 “Background, I regret having to contact you in this regard. However, as you are aware, a question has been raised about a possible violation of the Fuqua School's Honor Code by a member of your team. The Honor Code requires that under these circumstances I conduct an investigation of the matter in order to determine whether or not there is sufficient evidence to warrant a full and formal hearing of the case by the Fuqua School's Judicial Board. In compliance with the provisions of the Honor Code, I have appointed two students from the program who are assisting with this investigation. If the investigation results in insufficient evidence to support a formal hearing, the matter is simply dropped and there will be no further mention of the incident. If the investigation does result in a formal hearing, the results of the hearing will be communicated to the Fuqua School community by the chairman of the Judicial Board. Confidentiality is a very important aspect of this investigation. The Honor Code is very clear that you and everyone else who is involved in this investigation are bound by a strict confidentiality restriction. You may not discuss fact that an investigation is underway or any other aspect of this matter with anyone who is not directly involved. Student privacy and confidentiality are highly guarded in these matters and I greatly appreciate your help. If you would like to review the Fuqua School Honor Code, a link is provided below: http://www . fuqua. duke. edu/ about/honor code/. If you have any questions regarding the Honor Code or the process of this investigation please contact me directly and I will be pleased to answer your questions. Request for your Statement: A question has been raised as to the conduct of one of your team members, Vamsidhar (Vamsi) Vurimindi. The question is in reference to his preparation for the National Cranberry Cooperative Case for your Operations Management course. In particular it has been asserted that during a team call Vamsi either stated or suggested that he had either searched for or acquired outside materials, information about, or solutions to this case. I am writing you specifically to obtain your recollection of the team call in question, what was said and by whom. However, if you have any additional information that you feel would be useful in determining whether or not an honor code violation mayor may not have taken place, that information is very much welcome and I encourage you to provide it. Please provide a written statement to me by Monday, March 16 with answers to the questions listed below. Again, thank you very much for your help in resolving this difficult and important matter. If you have any questions or related concerns, do not hesitate to contact me. And, once again, thank you in advance for complying with the need for strict confidentiality. 1) Were you present for the team call in question? 2) What is your recollection of what was said and by whom in regard to having searched for outside information regarding this case? 3) Did Vamsi say he had searched for outside information that would be useful in the completion of this case? 4) Did Vamsi indicate that he was in possession of any outside information that would be useful to the team in completing this assignment? 5) Did Vamsi provide or offer any outside information to the team in its completion of the assignment? 6) Is there any other information that you would like to share that would help better understand the circumstances or context of the conversation, or in any way help us better understand whether or not a violation of the honor code may have taken place? Thank you again for your help in this matter, Jg” Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 51 of 125
    • Page - 52 - of 125 273. On 16th March 2009, Defendant Robert Ball further accused Plaintiff with hatred abhorrence and abomination against Plaintiff by lying59 to John Gallagher that as “Vamsi said that he had looked up information regarding the case. He said that he had found a lot of information on the internet related to the NCC case, but he did not find exact answers to the specific questions asked in our case.” 59 1 Were you present for the team call in question? Ans: Yes. 2 What is your recollection of what was said and by whom in regard to having searched for outside information regarding this case? Ans: Vamsi, without being prompted, stated that he had searched on the internet and found a lot of information regarding the NCC case. He stated that he found that several other business schools have used this case. 3 Did Vamsi say he had searched for outside information that would be useful in the completion of this case? Ans: Vamsi said that he had looked up information regarding the case. He said that he had found a lot of information on the internet related to the NCC case, but he did not find exact answers to the specific questions asked in our case. 4 Did Vamsi indicate that he was in possession of any outside information that would be useful to the team in completing this assignment? Ans: Vamsi said that the found a lot of good information, but did not find exact answers to the case. Robert Ross stepped in and said according to the honor code we are not allowed to use outside sources for this case. This ended the discussion and Vamsi never submitted any of his research findings 5 Did Vamsi provide or offer any outside information to the team in its completion of the assignment? Ans: Vamsi did not provide the team with any of the information that he found on the internet. 6 Is there any other information that you would like to share that would help better understand the circumstances or context of the conversation, or in any way help us better understand whether or not a violation of the honor code may have taken place? Ans: While I understand that you are asking for specific information related to the NCC case, the following may not be relevant, but I feel the need to share. My team has not used a single contribution from Vamsi on any of our team submittals. It has become clear that Vamsi simply "googles" information related to the cases and emails it to the team. There is no analysis and, in my opinion, very little, if any, of the information he provides is beneficial to answering the question. I am very leery of any information that Vamsi submits because the information that he provides is very inconsistent and he does not cite his sources. I feel uncomfortable with Vamsi's work that we, as a team, may unknowingly submit something that violates the honor code. This trend has continued even after our discussion on clarifying the Honor Code and stating that it is his duty to seek clarification when in doubt. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 52 of 125
    • Page - 53 - of 125 274. On 16th March 2009, Defendant Shana Keating further accused Plaintiff with hatred abhorrence and abomination against Plaintiff by lying60 to John Gallagher that as, “I did not 60 1 Were you present for the team call in question? Ans: Yes. All five members of our team were present for the call, which I believe occurred on February 24th. We were discussing the Cranberry Case for our Operations Class. 2 What is your recollection of what was said and by whom in regard to having searched for outside information regarding this case? Ans: During our call, Vamsi apparently mentioned that he had searched the internet for solutions to the cranberry case. I did not hear this comment at all, as I was typing notes for our paper instead of listening to Vamsi. At the end of the call, Robert Ross addressed Vamsi's comments and I listened to this part of the call in its entirety. By now, I am not able to remember specifically what was said; however, I remember well the overall tone and messages communicated. I will outline this part of the conversation below as best I can. None of these are direct quotes, just summaries of my recollection of the conversation: Robert said he was uncomfortable with comments Vamsi had made earlier about searching for solutions to the case online. Robert said no one commented earlier in the call and supposed this was due to uncertainty of how to respond; however, Robert felt obligated to address Vamsi's remarks because Vamsi's actions are a violation of the honor code. Vamsi defended his actions by denying he was in violation of the honor code. He turned the conversation back on Robert by asking where the honor code specifically states this is a violation. Robert went on to say that, if Vamsi did not violate the honor code directly, he had certainly violated the spirit of the honor code. Robert also mentioned that Pranab (our operations professor) had told us we were not allowed to use outside sources. Vamsi suggested that the honor code and the instructions from the professor were not entirely clear. [Essentially, he claimed ignorance at this point.] Bobby Ball interjected that we all received the same written honor code and that we had all signed it; ignorance is not a valid excuse. I did not make any comments during this part of the call as I had not heard Vamsi's original remarks. I do not recall whether Navneet commented. I don't remember exactly how the conversation ended. However, I remember that Vamsi did not give us a sense of penitence; instead, he came across as defensive of his actions. 3 Did Vamsi say he had searched for outside information that would be useful in the completion of this case? Ans: I did not hear Vamsi say this at the beginning of the call. However, when Robert Ross addressed Vamsi's comments (that I missed), Vamsi never denied searching for the information. He only denied whether it violated the honor code. 4 Did Vamsi indicate that he was in possession of any outside information that would be useful to the team in completing this assignment? Ans: I do not know whether Vamsi was successful in obtaining solutions for the case. 5 Did Vamsi provide or offer any outside information to the team in its completion of the assignment? Ans: Vamsi was supposed to provide data to the team for the case. Specifically, he was supposed to provide the final cost analysis. However, Vamsi never contributed any work to the team (regardless of the source) for this case and his name was ultimately left off the assignment as a result. 6 Is there any other information that you would like to share that would help better understand the circumstances or context of the conversation, or in any way help us better understand whether or not a violation of the honor code may have taken place? Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 53 of 125
    • Page - 54 - of 125 hear Vamsi's remarks that sparked this conversation. However, I did hear the conversation during which Vamsi's earlier comments were addressed. During this conversation, Vamsi did not deny having searched for case solutions. His response to his actions was defensive and he tried to blame the honor code for not specifically defining this type of violation. He did not come across as apologetic or concerned about the possible repercussions of his actions. If you have additional questions or need clarification, please let me know. I am more than happy to oblige”. 275. On 16th March 2009, Navaneeth Latawa responded by falsely accusing Plaintiff with hatred abhorrence and abomination against Plaintiff by lying61 to John Gallagher that “Vamsi had Ans: I did not hear Vamsi's remarks that sparked this conversation. However, I did hear the conversation during which Vamsi's earlier comments were addressed. During this conversation, Vamsi did not deny having searched for case solutions. His response to his actions was defensive and he tried to blame the honor code for not specifically defining this type of violation. He did not come across as apologetic or concerned about the possible repercussions of his actions. If you have additional questions or need clarification, please let me know. I am more than happy to oblige. 61 1 Were you present for the team call in question? Ans: Yes. I was present during the call. 2 What is your recollection of what was said and by whom in regard to having searched for outside information regarding this case? Ans: Vamsi had mentioned that he googled National Cranberry and that he found that this case is being used in almost all schools. Then Robert Ross had said that we should not google cases as per honor code. Vamsi did mention that he googled National Cranberry but it was not clear whether he just searched for the company (cooperative) or he was specifically searching for the case. 3 Did Vamsi say he had searched for outside information that would be useful in the completion of this case? Ans: He did not say that we could use information in our case. 4 Did Vamsi indicate that he was in possession of any outside information that would be useful to the team in completing this assignment? Ans: No, he did not say that he had anything related to the case. 5 Did Vamsi provide or offer any outside information to the team in its completion of the assignment? Ans: No, he did not. 6 Is there any other information that you would like to share that would help better understand the circumstances or context of the conversation, or in any way help us better understand whether or not a violation of the honor code may have taken place? Ans: I think Vamsi might have searched National Cranberry out of curiosity to learn about National Cranberry co-operative. I cannot say that his intentions were to gather information about the case. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 54 of 125
    • Page - 55 - of 125 mentioned that he googled National Cranberry and that he found that this case is being used in almost all schools. Then Robert Ross had said that we should not google cases as per honor code. Vamsi did mention that he googled National Cranberry but it was not clear whether he just searched for the company (cooperative) or he was specifically searching for the case”. 276. While the Duke is investigating against Plaintiff into a potential violation to the Duke’ Honor Code, a large number of Plaintiff’ classmates talked about Duke’ investigation against Plaintiff into a potential violation to the Duke’ Honor Code. 277. Immediately, Plaintiff contacted John Gallagher and told him large number of Plaintiff’ classmates are talking about Duke’ investigation against Plaintiff and such publicity is in violation to Duke Policy and asked to enquire as to how a confidential a investigation has been publicized. 278. Nevertheless, John Gallagher told to Plaintiff that Duke Administration didn’t tell to anyone other than two student investigators Harold Hong and Defendant Barnes Barton, when in fact he wrote an email to Defendant Robert Ball, Shana Keating and Navaneeth Latawa and asking them to furnish additional details about alleged honor code violation against Plaintiff. 279. After the fact based on the Duke Discovery documents, by 24th March 2009, Duke’ investigation against Plaintiff into a potential violation to the Duke’ Honor Code is officially known to Plaintiff, Mark Brown, John Gallagher, Alaina Filkin, Professor Pranab Majumdar, Harold Hong, Navaneeth Latawa and to Defendants Barnes Barton, Robert Ball, Robert Ross and Shana Keating and it suppose to be not to be known by anyone else. Nevertheless a large number of Plaintiff’ classmates talked about Duke’ investigation against Plaintiff. 280. On 24th March 2009, after one month after filing honor code violation against Plaintiff, John Gallagher wrote an email to Plaintiff, Harold Hong, Navaneeth Latawa and to Defendants Barnes Barton, Robert Ball, Robert Ross and Shana Keating and told that, “by unanimous decision, we concluded that this case does not present sufficient evidence62 to warrant a 62 “I am writing in regard to the investigation into a potential violation of the Fuqua School's Honor Code. First, let me thank you for bringing the matter to my attention, for your thoughtful and timely responses to my requests for information, and for your compliance with the requirement for strict confidentiality. I have included Harold and Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 55 of 125
    • Page - 56 - of 125 formal hearing by the Judicial Board. As required by the Honor Code, the matter is now officially closed”. 281. In parallel, while, Duke’ investigation against Plaintiff into a potential violation to the Duke’ Honor Code, Duke Administration circulated a list of variable interest courses, which will be confirmed based on the student demand and faculty availability. The list includes the following courses (1) Supply Chain Management, (2) Derivatives, (3) Competitive Analysis, (4) Real Estate Finance, (5) Ethics in Management. 282. In fact Duke Administration made a specific promise to Plaintiff to offer Real Estate Finance course as part of electives and accordingly Plaintiff is eagerly waiting to take Real Estate Finance course, because Plaintiff has substantial interest in the real estate development. Hence, Plaintiff publically posted in the Duke’ web portal and asked and encouraged Plaintiff’ classmates to pick Real Estate Finance courses, because Duke already promised to Plaintiff to offer Real Estate Finance courses. Barnes on this note, as they were involved in the original transmittal of the issue to me. I want to assure you that this matter has been treated with care and thoroughly reviewed in keeping with the procedures outlined in the Honor Code. Two student investigators from your class were appointed to assist me in the investigation and the analysis of the resulting evidence. These students took their roles very seriously. Collectively we spent considerable time and effort reviewing and discussing the details of this case. While I cannot identify the individual students due to the confidentiality constraints, I want to let you know that your classmates have given generously of their time and attention. Every effort was made to resolve the issue as quickly as was consistent with the care and attention the situation required. By unanimous decision, we concluded that this case does not present sufficient evidence to warrant a formal hearing by the Judicial Board. As required by the Honor Code, the matter is now officially closed. I believe it may be helpful for me to put this case in the context of other cases with which I personally have been involved. In my years in this role, I have conducted several investigations across all of our Executive MBA Programs. Of those, only this one and one other has resulted in a recommendation not to go forward. Of the eight EMBA students who have been required to undergo a formal hearing by the Judicial Board, all have been convicted and sanctioned. The school takes these matters seriously and does not shy away from its responsibility to enforce the code and act when appropriate. Finally, pardon my repeated references to the need for confidentiality in this matter, but I do appreciate your continued compliance with this requirement. If you have any questions of me regarding the process, I am happy to speak with you and provide any information that I am free to share. I imagine that this situation has been stressful for you and your team mates. I am hopeful that its resolution will allow you to move forward from this point. I wish you all the best in completing your program and again thank you for your thoughtful participation in this process.” Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 56 of 125
    • Page - 57 - of 125 283. As soon Plaintiff publically posted in the Duke’ web portal and asked his classmates to pick Real Estate Finance courses, Defendants specifically asked other classmates not elect the Real Estate Finance course, because Plaintiff is interested in that course. 284. Unfortunately, Duke finalized the list of the electives other than the Real Estate Finance courses, despite Plaintiff and at least three (3) other Plaintiff’ classmates elected for Real Estate Finance course. In contrast, Duke offered Derivatives course as elective only for two students. 285. As soon Duke finalized the list of the electives other than the Real Estate Finance courses, Amit Khare and Sreedhar Manjigani approached Plaintiff and sarcastically said “it seems that your favorite course is not offered by the School”, implying that these Plaintiff’ classmates asked other students not to select the Real Estate Finance course as an elective. 286. At this point in-time, Duke failed its third specific promise to Plaintiff to offer courses in Real Estate Finance; and it is also clear that defendants induced Duke Administration not to offer a course in Real Estate Finance by asking students not to select the Real Estate Finance course as an elective. 287. Immediately the first class Duke officially dropped honor code violation charges against Plaintiff, on 4th April 2009, during Term 4, Session 10, of Professor Allan Lind’ class, when Plaintiff attempted to participate in the class discussion, class representatives objecting to Plaintiff’ class participation and Plaintiff insisted and participated in the class discussion. 288. Immediately after Plaintiff’ class participation, in the immediate class break, class representative, Kristoffer Singleton (Class Representative), sitting right in front of Plaintiff turn towards Plaintiff, and told that “Vamsi you are not even a graphic artist and don’t know the content”. 289. Immediately Plaintiff asked Kristoffer Singleton what made him to say like that. Defendant Kristoffer Singleton refused to talk to Plaintiff. 290. Right at that time, Johnny Williams, shouted to the class and looking at Plaintiff that “Vamsi is acting up again”. 291. Plaintiff’ classmates and class representatives continuously shut-out the Plaintiff and didn’t allow the Plaintiff to participate in the class discussions. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 57 of 125
    • Page - 58 - of 125 292. In continuation to the Foundations of Strategy course, Class #09 about Restructuring, Mergers and Acquisition, Plaintiff started a course web portal discussion, by posting Plaintiff’ opinion by comparing the Corporate Mergers and Acquisitions to the Hindu marriage system, with an emphasis on the culture fit is an important aspect to transcend the spreadsheet calculations into a reality. Plaintiff ended the discussion, by offering apologizes, if his analogy between Hindu marriage system and corporate Mergers and Acquisition offend any individual. 293. In response to the Plaintiff’ Foundations of Strategy course class online discussion, Pradeep Rajagopal responded as follows: “Kira63 - ear muffs – but WTF!” So, in response to Pradeep Rajagopal’ reply, Plaintiff wrote back as follows: “Had hoped there would be some intellectual feed back or if this offended some one would have been open to hearing a request to find a different analogy. It is funny though that American corporate culture often refers to mergers as marriages, for example an analyst might say merger between two companies 'A marriage made in heaven". 294. Neither Professor Kira Fabrizio nor any other Plaintiff’ classmate didn’t condemn Pradeep Rajagopal’ ridiculing Plaintiff’ class participation. 295. The day of the last class before the final exam in April 2009, Plaintiff finishing his lunch at R. David Thomas Center and ready to go for after noon classes, while, Plaintiff is talking about the smoky mountains in the Carolina States, then Defendant Robert Ross jumped into the conversation and stated that Plaintiff himself is “Smokey”. 296. At that time, Pratibhash Chattopadhyay was also presented and as soon, Defendant Robert Ross finished his comments, Pratibhash Chattopadhyay sarcastically asked the Plaintiff “is this humiliating to you?” 297. On the same day, when Plaintiff is waiting in the Raleigh/Durham airport to catch a flight back to Philadelphia, Jennifer Erickson, Jason Sundberg and Jason C. Link and other six classmates including Defendant Barnes Barton followed Plaintiff, where he is waiting for his flight. 63 Professor Kira Fabrizio is the Professor for Foundations of Strategy course Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 58 of 125
    • Page - 59 - of 125 298. At that time, Plaintiff’ classmates started harassing Plaintiff by making derogatory remarks about Plaintiff’ sexuality. Jason Sundberg told to other classmates that “Vamsi need pussies” and immediately Jennifer Erickson responded back, “Vamsi is a Gay’, and in response Jason Sundberg countered “Vamsi isn’t a capable person”, implying that Plaintiff is sexually impotent. 299. On the same day, when Plaintiff left the group and boarded his flight, unfortunately, Plaintiff had to sit besides Jason Sundberg in the United Airlines flight back to Philadelphia, and during the journey, Jason Sundberg sounds threatening, that “I will win, because you are not working for any corporation”. Implying that Plaintiff’ consulting assignment has been terminated by Wyeth and that termination is some sort of affirmation for the defendants allegations against Plaintiff that Plaintiff lacks academic integrity and had a history of academic dishonesty; and indulged in adultery. 300. Duke officially dropped honor code violation charges against Plaintiff, and subsequent conversations with Mark Brown regarding Plaintiff’ team norms, Defendants Robert Ball, Robert Ross and Shana Keating continue to shut-out Plaintiff by finding creative excuses not to include his contributions into the team assignments. So Plaintiff contacted John Gallagher and asked for permission to work alone without64 a team. 301. On 23rd April 2009, John Gallagher responded to Plaintiff that his team cannot just choose to work without him and Plaintiff cannot65 just choose to work on his own. 64 “Dear Dean Gallagher, This is further to your last conversation regarding honor code violation and my subsequent conversations with Mark Brown regarding team norms, my fellow team members are finding creative excuses not to include my contributions in the last two team assignments. Dead Poets Society assignment in Leadership and Industry Analysis in Corporate Strategy courses. Team members are reluctant to entertain any suggestions and I am not in a position to spend unlimited amount of time to convince my team members. So I want to work alone on the course assignments. What need to be done in order to get permission from the school management to work alone?” 65 “Vamsi: I can speak with you tomorrow, Tuesday, at almost any time, so if that will work with you, suggests a time or two and I will confirm. If Tuesday will not work for you, I also can make time on Wednesday. But, on Thursday I go to India and will be out of the country until April 7th. So, it would be best if we could find a time on Tuesday or Wednesday that works for both of us. There is no provision for students to complete team assignments individually. That is, you cannot just choose to work on your own. And, your team can not just choose to work without you. I know that this can cause some very difficult situations. Is Mark Brown working with you and your team?” Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 59 of 125
    • Page - 60 - of 125 302. On 29th April 2009, subsequent to the Duke officially dropped honor code violation charges against Plaintiff, wrote an email to John Gallagher stating that the allegation of honor code violation and subsequent investigation process has caused a severe hardship on Plaintiff and his immediate family. In addition the lack of confidentiality in the process and the fact that just, right before Defendants filing honor code violations sought Mark Brown's intervention for a resolution makes the truth more clear. In addition, reporting of off-handed conversational comments as an honor code violation and not using his work is clear evidence that someone is angry, and politically or competitively motivated. So Plaintiff requested John Gallagher to reflect these facts in the record and asked what recourse he had for using Duke Procedures and policies to take out their personal animosity66 against Plaintiff. 303. On 29th April 2009 John Gallagher responded back to Plaintiff and said that he don’t have any evidence or information that would lead him to believe that anyone plotted or conspired67 to bring up the honor code issue. 66 “Dear Dean Gallagher, Thank you for your email. Appreciate that the potential honor code violation issue is treated with care and reviewed thoroughly as per Fuqua's Honor Code. Am happy that the case does not present sufficient evidence to warrant a formal hearing by the judicial board and the matter is officially closed. The allegation of honor code violation and subsequent investigation process has caused a severe hardship to me and to my immediate family. It is always been my goal to learn as much as about business as possible and that is why personally I am bearing 100% of the tuition fee, commuting expenses, and time for the study. However this does not seem true about those who made the allegations. It is evident from the behavior of the few team classmates that they have resolved to jeopardize my learning opportunity, by causing unavoidable distractions. The lack of confidentiality in the process and the fact that just, right before the perceived honor code violations incident, I have expressed my strong dissent regarding autocratic leadership style adopted by few team members and sought Mark Brown's intervention for a resolution makes the truth more clear. Even though we have reached a formal agreement regarding the modalities of the team's functionality, assignment preparation and submission, the agreement has been violated grossly in two assignments (1) Dead Poets Society in Leadership (2) Industry Analysis in Corporate Strategy. My personal contribution to the team assignments has been grossly neglected by the few team members in the 3rd and the current terms. These facts cause me to sincerely believe that this reporting of off- handed conversational comments as an honor code violation and not using my work is clear evidence that someone is angry, and politically or competitively motivated. Would like the record to reflect these facts and respectfully request to know what recourse there might be?” 67 “Vamsi: I sincerely regret that this situation has added stress to your student life. I know that this situation has been very difficult. Honor Code investigations are necessarily stressful and difficult situations to manage. I have a few comments about your situation that I can share with you without violating any confidentiality, and that might be helpful to you. First, once someone raises the possibility of an Honor Code violation, I am required to launch an investigation with two student investigators to assist me. I have no discretion in this. And, the investigation must be treated seriously - I cannot prejudge the situation. The evidence must be gathered in an unbiased way. Every attempt is made to keep the entire process confidential. And, it necessarily takes a little time to formulate the questions, gather the information and to consult with the investigators and decide on next steps. All of this added Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 60 of 125
    • Page - 61 - of 125 304. While, Plaintiff is struggling with defendants verbal assaults and using Duke Policies and procedures to take out their personal animosity against Plaintiff, in the last two weeks of April 2009, there are some reported incidents of H1V1 virus spreading among the airline travelers, so Professors Pranab Majumdar and Kira Fabrizio give an option to students who fly from far off places to take exams remotely. 305. Duke’ hostile campus environment caused emotional and physical stress on Plaintiff, which in turn caused sleepless nights and reduced metabolic activity, which in turn caused Plaintiff to gain over 40 pounds of weight. Because, Defendant Students harassment was so intense, Plaintiff is looking for every opportunity to avoid them. So, asked Professors Pranab Majumdar and Kira Fabrizio to allow Plaintiff to take his final exams remotely. 306. Ironically, the same day when John Gallagher told to Plaintiff that he don’t have any evidence or information that would lead him to believe that anyone plotted or conspired to bring up the honor code issue against Plaintiff, on 29th April 2009, Defendant Robert Ross with personal animosity, hatred68 and anger against Plaintiff wrote an email to Professor Kira to your stress, I am sure. Just waiting and not hearing anything is difficult. But, once the evidence was gathered, the three of us unanimously and independently came to the conclusion that there was not sufficient evidence to go forward with a formal case. And, I think any group of reasonable people would have come to the same conclusion. In my own way I have done some informal probing to determine the extent to which there has been any "talk" about the case among the class. You told me that someone mentioned it to you - so obviously some information got out. But, I could not find any evidence that there was any widespread awareness of the investigation. I had to ask very carefully as I did not want to unintentionally start any rumors myself. But, I did not hear anything that worried me, and I still have not heard another word about it from anyone. So, I am hopeful that the situation is contained well enough. It is quite clear to me that there is some significant tension and difficulty on your team. And, I know that the question of your possible honor code violation came up in the context of a team meeting. But, I have no evidence or information that would lead me to believe that anyone plotted or conspired to bring up the honor code issue. I would be happy to talk with you about this further if you wish. But, you should know that the matter has been totally silent from my point of view since it ended. Jg” 68 “Kira, John, I know I am not the only person with this concern (because two separate people have emailed me with their concern) but I may be the only person coming forward with these concerns. I need to further preface this with the fact that I hate writing this email, but ... three things concern me about the remote exams: 1) A minor concern is the large number of people taking two closed book exams away from school. I believe in our Honor Code and I believe in most of my fellow classmates, but we are creating a significant risk of inappropriate or sketchy behavior. Dan Ariely's Behavioral Economics lectures regularly on cheating and how people rationalize it for themselves. "Oh, a little look will not be _that_ bad. ... No one will even know, and I didn't even need to look, it was just to confirm my answer. Yep, that is what I thought it was. I didn't cheat." Then the ball starts rolling down the hill. I'm concerned that a situation is being created where we can probabilistically assume that cheating will occur. - One suggestion is that you check the distribution of the performance of those taking the exams remotely against those taking it on campus and if their is a statistically significant difference, correct for it. - [Disclaimer - last term when I got sick during exams, after offering to Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 61 of 125
    • Page - 62 - of 125 Fabrizio and John Gallagher stating that he is very much concerned about Plaintiff that he could see Plaintiff searching the Internet for answers, using his textbooks, or even having someone help him with the exams. 307. On 29th April 2009, Defendant Shana Keating and Robert Ball sent an email to Defendant Robert Ross and Professor Kira Fabrizio and in addition publically posted about his concern about Plaintiff taking exams remotely and made direct reference to Plaintiff about his concern that Plaintiff searching the Internet for answers, using his textbooks, or even having someone help him with the exam. 308. On 1st May 2009, Plaintiff took the Foundations of Strategy final exam remotely. Because, the Defendant Students harassment, Plaintiff was under severe stress, and could not able to register the correct time of the exam and Plaintiff started the exam one hour late and submitted his exam an hour late. 309. Because, Plaintiff submitted his exam an hour late, Professor Kira Fabrizio reported that as a violation to the honor code. 310. In response to Professor Kira Fabrizio’ honor code violation Plaintiff contacted Professor Kira Fabrizio’ give detailed explanation around the circumstances that lead Plaintiff to submit his exam an hour late and asked why69 would she think it is an honor code violation. come back to campus, I was allowed to take my macroeconomics exam at home. The exam was open book, so the only risk of cheating on my behalf was taking too long or talking to people. I didn't do either one.] 2) Another very minor concern is that some of the people not taking the exam are local. There are enough private spaces in our expanded space that we could provide them a private room. For an administration that suspended a student for missing a mandatory orientation day to allow students living less than 30 minutes from campus to call it in for their exams seems inconsistent. 3) I am very concerned about Vamsi Vurimindi (see reference to others having emailed me with their concerns). He has been on my team the last two terms and he has not demonstrated respect for the honor code. As a team we had to repeatedly warn his about behavior that we felt was border line at best. It went so far in one occasion that an official report was made. However, it was determined that there was insufficient evidence to prove that he had done anything in violation of the honor code. I respect our judicial process, but reality tells me that this will just embolden him to continue doing what he has done before. I could see him searching the Internet for answers, using his textbooks, or even having someone help him with the exam. Out of respect for the challenging jobs that you have in dealing with this awkward situation, I will not be posting anything to public forums about my concerns. It is not my goal to stir up public dissension. However, I respect the integrity of our program and feel that in order to protect it, I must voice my concerns. Humbly submitted, Robert Ross” 69 Dear Professor Kira, This is further to my yesterday's email and after reading your email carefully, I thought that it would be in my best interest, to provide a detailed clarification to you as follows: Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 62 of 125
    • Page - 63 - of 125 311. Professor Kira Fabrizio respond70 to Plaintiff and Plaintiff believes that Professor Kira Fabrizio filed an violation to the honor code against Plaintiff and penalized Plaintiff by assigning a low 1) The issue started with an inaccurate assumption that one should complete the examination in 4 hour's time and exam starts at 9:00 AM. 2) My office has a contract with Verizon FIGS service which provides telephone, fax and internet services. Also use eFax service, so that I can access the faxes anywhere; however the issue is that my internet connection failed at about 9:00 PM before the exam day and I have made every attempt to fix the internet connection. I was very upset with the unexpected problem with the internet connection and spending precious time to fix the internet connection, instead preparing for the examination. 3) Actually, I have planned to take the examination in my office, because, it offers a quite four hours window of time and did not anticipated the unexpected loss of internet connection. 4) I have stayed very late to fix the internet connection and went to bed with a hope that I can fix the hardware issue in the early morning as soon as the building technician arrives. 5) At about 7:30 AM I did realized that I cannot fix the internet connection before 9:00 AM and quickly made arrangements to take examination at my relative's office. 6) Due to network incompatibility, I could not able to connect my laptop in my relative's office and have to use one of their computers. I could not able to access my email server from their computers, so I have used a web interface to access my email. 7) Web email interface was never setup with the correct spam filters, so did not recognize your email address, so your email ended up in a spam folder. So, it took a while to realize that your email is in the spam folder. 8) As is my work environment is stressful, examination anxiety, lack of sleep and with poor health, I could not able to think and react to the demanding situation. The reason that I have an examination anxiety is that your sample question paper is very difficult to make a correct choice, because the available choices are very close. By the time I have downloaded your examination, I am already past 9:00 AM and did take time to read your email and the first page of the examination. As soon I opened your question paper, I felt little bit relieved because, the first several questions are exactly same as your sample paper. 9) Due my inaccurate assumption, logistical issues and coupled with lack of sleep and poor health condition, could not able get in touch with you on a timely fashion and did a mistake. Please do not think that I am disrespectful to you or to the institution. 10) I have no incentive to cheat or lie to you about my situation. I am attending the possible. I did not requested or search for a corporate sponsorship or as a matter of fact never considered to trade my newly acquired skills for a simple promotion in any corporate office. I have valued your class, wanted to learn as much as possible and make my business a super success. As a professor, you have several avenues to determine whether I have mastered your class material or not. I have demonstrated to you that I have mastered your class material by participating in the class discussions, course board discussions and submitted my other course work, where I have used your class material. So, I sincerely believe that I do not deserve a fail just because of late submission and appreciate your generosity and recognizing my effort to master the class material and class participation. Regarding honor code, I have been sufficiently harassed by my fellow students for the last four terms and I can't take any more honor code violation accusations. Can you please explain me why do you think that my late submission constitute an honor code violation? When it would be a good time for you to talk to me ? Do you prefer a telephone call or do you want me to come in person? 70 Vamsi, I have put a lot of thought into what to do about your final exam. Please understand that I am not in any way trying to punish you, but I need to uphold the honor code and hold everyone in class to the same set of rules. The criteria for taking the exam remotely were clearly described in the posting to the course platform on 4/28/09. This included a requirement that the exam be taken "at the same time as other students (the strategy exam is 8am on Friday morning)." This was followed by a second posting to the platform on 4/30/09 that listed the set of remote testers (including yourself) and reminded everyone of the requirement that the test be taken at 8 and completed in Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 63 of 125
    • Page - 64 - of 125 pass grade to Plaintiff is directly induced by Defendants Shana Keating, Robert Ball and Robert Ross public dissention against Plaintiff and influencing by suggesting Plaintiff searched the Internet for answers, used his textbooks, and someone helping him with the exam. 312. As soon, Professor Kira Fabrizio filed a violation to the honor code against Plaintiff, John Gallagher appointed two student investigators Murali Krishnamurthy and Pratibhash Chattopadhyay to investigate into the violation. 313. Unfortunately, Murali Krishnamurthy and Pratibhash Chattopadhyay is the two student investigators, who are investigating the Professor Kira Fabrizio’ honor code violation against Plaintiff are the team members with Plaintiff and without knowing this Plaintiff continued to work with Murali Krishnamurthy and Pratibhash Chattopadhyay. But, Murali Krishnamurthy and Pratibhash Chattopadhyay know that they are investigating against Plaintiff. 314. While, John Gallagher, Murali Krishnamurthy and Pratibhash Chattopadhyay conducting investigation into Professor Kira Fabrizio’ honor code violation against Plaintiff, a vast majority of the Plaintiff’ classmates talked about new honor code violation against Plaintiff along with the Plaintiff’ private facts. 315. While Duke is investigating into the Professor Kira Fabrizio’ honor code violation, on 14th May 2009, Alaina Filkin, wrote an email to Plaintiff and notified that, Professor Kira Fabrizio, assigned a Low Pass grade in Corporate Strategy Course; and told to Plaintiff about Duke’ the 4 hour window. Your actions on the day of the exam were unacceptable. You did not meet the criteria set forth regarding when the test must be taken. This also is a potential violation of the honor code, and it has been referred to John Gallagher for possible honor code processing. If the conditions for the test were at all unclear, or you were having any kind of technical difficulties, you certainly should have been in touch with me. Other remote test takers who had difficulties (including the faxed completed exam not going through and questions about procedures) contacted me either before or during the exam. You knew that you were having trouble with your internet connection the evening before the exam, and could have easily contacted me to notify me of the problem and make alternative arrangements in case it was not repaired. For example, I could have easily faxed you the exam in the morning. As it was, I had to make several attempts to contact you when the exam period was over just to get the completed exam back. Again, this is unacceptable. I know that you were engaged in the class and put further effort during the term, so I do not want to outright fail you for the term. I am inclined to fail you for the final exam. However, failing the final would also mean failing the term, since the final makes up 30% of your term grade. Instead, I will penalize your grade on the final by 5 points. This is more than generous on my part. My suggestion for you is to learn from this experience and conduct yourself in a more responsible manner in the future, in both your schooling and professional career. Best wishes, Kira Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 64 of 125
    • Page - 65 - of 125 "strike rule", if Plaintiff received another Low Pass grade in any other subject, Plaintiff will be kicked out of Duke. 316. Immediately, on 14th May 2009, Plaintiff contacted John Gallagher to appeal his grade, but John Gallagher told to Plaintiff that there is a pending outcome of the honor code violation filed by Professor Kira Fabrizio, Plaintiff can’t make his grade appeal. 317. On 15th May 2009, Plaintiff contacted Pam Brown (Duke Administration) and explained about the three honor code violation complaints (Two false and baseless honor code violations filed by Defendants Robert Ross, Robert Ball, and Shana Keating; and one frivolous honor code violation filed by Professor Kira Fabrizio) and unknown students reporting that Plaintiff carried a gun in the campus; and the harassment by shutting-out plaintiff in the duke campus; and circulating false rumors about Plaintiff by the defendants and wanted to file formal harassment complaint against defendants. Nevertheless, Pam Brown asked Plaintiff to talk to Ellen Wilbur and/or John Gallagher. 318. Immediately after Plaintiff contacted Pam Brown wrote an email to Ellen Wilbur and updated them about Plaintiff harassment complaint71. 319. At that time, because there are very many accusations leveled against Plaintiff and don’t know as to why Plaintiff was targeted at Duke, so to begin with Plaintiff first wanted to read the recommendation letters that Duke received on behalf of Plaintiff’ towards his admission application and asked John Gallagher to provide copies of the recommendation letters from letters of Mr. Stephen Kopko (online) and Dr. Wang (hand-written). 320. After much deliberation, John Gallagher informed Plaintiff received six (6) recommendation letters, but didn’t show the copies of the recommendation letters from letters of Mr. Stephen Kopko (online) and Dr. Wang (hand-written). 71 Ellen, Vamsidhar Vurimindi called me to report generalized harassment by other WEMBA students. I explained that our office handles those sorts of things for the daytime program, but that a Weekend student should report these kinds of things to you or John. He told me that unknown persons had reported that he carried a gun but that it wasn't true. He didn't report a specific incident or name names. Sorry to toss this one back to you! Pam Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 65 of 125
    • Page - 66 - of 125 321. On 8th June 2009, after reviewing the recommendation letters except of Stephen Kopko (online), and Dr. Wang (hand-written), Vurimindi didn’t find any incriminating information about Vurimindi in the recommendation letters, and asked John Gallagher to guide him about the Duke policies and procedure as to how to file a formal complaint for harassment against his classmates. 322. Approximately, after a month after Professor Kira Fabrizio filed honor code violation against Vurimindi, on 8th June 2009 John Gallagher wrote to Plaintiff that judiciary committee agreed that your actions and inactions were reprehensible and irresponsible. However, after very careful consideration the majority opinion was that the case probably does not rise to the level of an Honor Code violation and that it should be dropped. 323. In order to file a formal complaint for harassment against his classmates, Plaintiff initiated to gather information and contacted a Lynn Taylor via email asking her, “Lynn, I just started reading the "Marriot Case", and rings the bell about our brief conversation that we had on 23rd May 2009. I have been ignoring the funny rumor(s) about my personnel information and even now I ignore them, however, I am curious to know your source for the gossip. Whenever you get a chance, please drop me an email or call me at 267-250-4092.” 324. As soon, Vurimindi initiated a discussion with John Gallagher about filing a harassment complaint against Plaintiff’ classmates, and after John Gallagher informed that Professor Kira Fabrizio’ honor code violation against Plaintiff was dropped, and initiated a dialogue with Lynn Taylor to gather information to file a formal complaint for harassment against his classmates, on 08th June 2009, Defendant Moira Ringo wrote an email to John Gallagher stating that Defendant Peter Walton told her that he witnessed Plaintiff carrying a pistol in the Thomas Center and asked Gallagher to explain her Duke policy on students carrying guns o campus and asked and what type of proof72 is required to adjudicate this issue against Plaintiff. 72 Hi John, I just got off the phone with my classmate Pete Walton, who told me that he witnessed a fellow student, Vamshi, carrying a pistol in the Thomas Center. Vamshi showed him the gun. This is not a tasteless joke about firearms – he actually brought a gun to class. Pete has no incentive to lie or exaggerate about this story. I have enclosed the e-mail that he sent me below. At the time he sent this, I had no idea who he was and had barely spoken to him. I asked him to explain the note but did not get a response. I consider this behavior to be bizarre at Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 66 of 125
    • Page - 67 - of 125 325. On 8th June 2009, Defendant Moira Ringo wrote another email to John Gallagher and told to John Gallagher that she had recently heard from Defendant Peter Walton, that Plaintiff brought a gun to the class and forwarded, Plaintiff’ 15th September 2008 email asking her why she is propagating depreciatory information about Plaintiff to John Gallagher. 326. In response John Gallagher asked Defendant Moira Ringo whether she had any understanding what Plaintiff is referring in his email dated 15th September 2008, asking her why she is propagating depreciatory information about Plaintiff. 327. In response Defendant Moira Ringo lied to John Gallagher that Plaintiff’ email was entirely out of the blue and have no idea what Plaintiff is talking about. 328. In addition Defendant Moira Ringo further lied that she sends an email asking Plaintiff to explain his note, because in fact Defendant Moira Ringo didn’t send a reply at all. 329. In addition, Defendant Moira Ringo fabricated a new story that Plaintiff had a conversation with her asking her ethical standard at work. Because, Plaintiff didn’t ask Defendant Moira Ringo’ ethical standard at her work. 330. In addition, Defendant Moira Ringo fabricated another false accusation73 that she saw that Plaintiff had an argument with Greg Valentine in the hallway in a raised tone and in addition further accused that Plaintiff is harassing her and other students. best and threatening when coupled with the fact that he had similar interactions with several other students. Please let me know the school's stance on students carrying firearms to class, and what type of proof is required to adjudicate this issue. 73 “Hi John, Vamsi's note was entirely out of the blue. I have no idea what he is talking about. He did not come up in my conversations with any of our classmates up until that time, so I know that whatever he seems to be accusing me of could not have happened. And when I asked him to explain the note, he never responded. I have the e-mail that I sent to him if you are interested. As result, I stayed away from him. That is, until I saw him have a similar paranoid interaction with another student, Greg Valentine, outside our classroom several months later. This was the first time it occurred to me that he was harassing other students. This is from a note that I sent our class rep on Dan Paschke on 11 th January 2009 about some additional interactions with Vamsi: “On Saturday, he approached me in the break room and stated that if I was applying my ethical standard at work, he was concerned about the future of my company because he 'had skin in the game.' I responded that health care was pretty unique in terms of ethical standard, to which he responded with a very energetic list of his qualifications to make the statement that he had. He appeared to be picking a fight with me, so I walked away and went to class. A few hours later I saw him talking to Greg in the hallway in a raised tone. When Greg and Derek came into the classroom later, they were both stunned and Greg was upset. Greg was on-deck to present in Econ class, and I did not want this to shake him. I assured Greg that Vamsi had picked a fight with me earlier that day and that was just how he was. Robert Ross came over and told Greg that Vamsi had another interaction with a student as well” Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 67 of 125
    • Page - 68 - of 125 331. At this point in time it is clear that Defendant Peter Walton lied to Defendant Moira Ringo that Plaintiff showed him a gun, when in fact on 19th January 2009, Defendant Peter Walton told to Katherine Amato that he didn’t see a gun in the hands of Plaintiff. 332. On 11th June 2009, Defendant Moira Ringo wrote another email John Gallagher and stated that she spoke with Defendant Peter Walton and he explicitly stated that Plaintiff showed him a pistol that he was carrying when both of them were in the Thomas Center and characterized Plaintiff as workplace/school shooter74. 333. On 11th June 2009, John Gallagher responded to Defendant Moira Ringo that he will contact Defendant Peter Walton to conform the report that Plaintiff showed him a pistol that he was carrying when both of them were in the Thomas Center and that would have an immediate effect, implying that if Defendant Peter Walton confirm that Plaintiff showed a pistol to him in the Thomas Center, that will have an immediate effect of expelling75 Plaintiff from Duke. 74 “I spoke with Pete on Monday and he stated explicitly that Vamshi showed him a pistol that he was carrying when both of them were in the Thomas Center. John, I agree that it is very important to separate rumors and hearsay from a direct eyewitness account. This is a direct eyewitness account from a person who (to the best of my knowledge) has had no disagreements or altercations with Vamsi, and therefore no motivation to lie. My concern is not only that this person brought a weapon to class, although that alone is very disturbing. It is also that his other behavior very closely fits the profile seen in workplace/school violence incidents. Apologies if this is obvious to you, but I am hoping this will help you understand my level of concern and why I am highlighting this issue to you directly. Workplace/School Shooter Profile: 1) Paranoid, everyone out to get me (evidenced bye-mail to me, my witnessed interactions of him with Greg in hall outside class) 2) Social isolation (run-ins with well over 10 people in the program, appears to be an outcast) 3) Defensive and combative, no one understands me, everyone else is wrong (plenty of examples from conversations with me or things he has posted on the bulletin board) 4) Will show the weapon or talk about the weapon to people as a way to gain power (He must have known it was against school policy and the law to carry a weapon on campus. Why did he show it to Pete?) I understand that you will need to check this out. We return to class a week from Friday and it would be great if we had some type of resolution before that time. In the meantime, I have discussed my concerns with Pete and a handful of other students, who were the ones who brought this issue to light.” 75 “Moira: I very much appreciate your quick and clear response. I also want you to know that I understand the concerns you are expressing clearly. From your point of view, the question about the gun is part of a larger pattern and it is the pattern you are concerned about. From that point of view, it is less important if there was or was not a gun in reality. The reason I am focusing on the gun issue so much may not be obvious to you; but from my vantage point, the options I have for addressing the issue are dramatically different if there has been a violation of a state law and a Duke policy. It is not that the other issues are not important to me - they are very much so. But, in terms of what options I have available to address these issues, the presence of a gun on campus is a very different Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 68 of 125
    • Page - 69 - of 125 334. At this point it time, it is evident that Defendant Moira Ringo twice lied about her harassment to Plaintiff and lied about Plaintiff’ interactions with Greg Valentine; and fabricated a story about Plaintiff asking Defendant Moira Ringo’ ethical standard at her work. And, it is also evident that Defendant Moira is so eager to see that Plaintiff is expelled from Duke. 335. On 09th June 2009 in response to Plaintiff enquiry to find a procedure for filing harassment and discrimination complaint against defendants, John Gallagher asked Plaintiff to file his complaint with Cynthia Clinton, Director, Office of Institutional Equity76 Duke University. 336. On 09th June 2009, John Gallagher, after asking Plaintiff to file his complaint with Cynthia Clinton Director, Office of Institutional Equity, Duke University, wrote an email to Katherine Amato that Cynthia Clinton told to Plaintiff that the above sated incidents didn’t rise to the level of a discrimination or harassment case. So, my response to Plaintiff that the Office of Institutional Equity, Duke University is the clear choice for raising such an issue may have discouraged77 Plaintiff. circumstance. So, at the moment my top priority is getting in touch with Pete to have him confirm this report. That should be relatively fast and easy and would have a very immediate effect. Thank you again for your help in this matter and I will be back to you very quickly once I get this piece of the puzzle in place”. 76 Vamsi: Thank you for the clarification. I strongly recommend that you take these matters to the. As I say, is well versed in these matters and can advise you best. I am somewhat familiar with many of the issues you have highlighted in your message. However, I am not aware at all about item vii. When you say "Illegally obtaining information about my medications and making insulting comments" what are you referring to here? When and how did someone illegally obtain information about medications? Please clarify that remark for me if you can. And, again, I am curious to what extent you regard this as a set of behaviors that the class as a whole is undertaking, or to what extent there are individual people you feel are responsible for harassment and/or discrimination. My understanding of the policy is that a formal complaint would be made against individual people and not against the class as a whole. Would you like to pursue a complaint against specific individuals for some or all of these concerns? Or, is this a more broadly based complaint against the class as a whole? Thank you for clarifying some of these issues for me. Jg 77 Jennifer and Kathie: I just want you guys to be kept in the loop on Vamsi as I have been talking to each of you a bit today on the latest issues he raised. I received a note from him asking about initiating a formal harassment complaint. I spoke with Cynthia in the OlE about this situation and communicated with Vamsi about that conversation. Cynthia told me she spoke with him a few days back and advised him that the kinds of incidents he had brought to her did not rise to the level of a discrimination or harassment case. So, my response to him that the OlE is the clear choice for raising such an issue may have discouraged him. Or, he may really have decided to just let it go independent of my advice. But, in any case, for now he has dropped the request to bring a formal complaint along those lines. jg Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 69 of 125
    • Page - 70 - of 125 337. As soon as Defendant Moira Ringo escalated the issue, on 17th June 2009, Katharine Amato, wrote an email to John Gallagher stating that Mr. Boulding suggested to her in addition to the police looking into the policy and criminal activity, asked her contact Duke’ Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) and update them on the activity to date about Honor Code investigations against Plaintiff and Plaintiff’ discussions with Office of Institutional Equity, Duke University and his conversations with Plaintiff about his anger and issues with some students along with new information that Defendant Peter Walton bringing to the table. 338. On 17th June 2009, John Gallagher wrote an email to William Boulding and explained his conversations with Defendant Moira Ringo characterizing Plaintiff as a workplace/school shooter and Defendant Peter Walton new story78 that he saw the handle of the gun that it was a revolver and was not taken from the holster. But he did not see the barrel or if it was or was not loaded, but Pete as "gun enthusiast" he felt confident in what he saw and it looked authentic to him. In addition, John Gallagher told to William Boulding that he isn’t sure what to believe now, because on 19th January 2009, Defendant Peter Walton told to Katharine Amato that he didn’t see a gun. 78 “Bill: You remember Vamsi in the Weekend I want you to be aware that the situation there has taken a new twist and I am to run down the I received a call and then a note from a student who is very much concerned about Vamsi as a dangerous "shooter." She with me and mentioned that someone had seen him a gun. I asked who that was, and was told it was Pete Walton, one of our Weekend students. I confirmed with Kathie that he was, in fact, one of the three students involved in the gun incident. He, Vamsi, and Eugene White were the three in that conversation. Kathie resent me her notes from the conversations she had with them. In her notes Pete said he did not see a gun. And, said that Pete joined the conversation after it was underway and did not understand the joking nature of Vamsi's statement. Assured us that it was a joking comment and no one ever saw a gun. I with Vamsi and he strongly reassured me that they were all just joking around - that he had carried a gun when he lived in India but did not own one, carry one, would never do so and did not do so. When I told the student who called that this was an old rumor back some time, she told me that she had just heard this from and he said Vamsi had a gun. I asked her to double check and determine if this was a new incident or the old incident and to confirm that he in seen the gun. She wrote back that Pete said it was the original incident and that he HAD seen the gun. I contacted Pete and he told me the story anew. This he told me that he asked Vamsi if he was a gun and Vamsi his overcoat to show the holster and the gun. Pete said he saw the handle of the gun that it was a revolver, but the gun was not taken from the holster. He did not see the barrel or if it was or was not loaded. But l as Pete is a "gun enthusiast" he felt confident in what he saw. He said "it looked authentic to me." I am not sure what to believe now - but this significantly the playing field in my opinion. I have a call and an e-mail into Lieutenant at Duke Police. He is the gentleman who handled the case originally. In my opinion the fact that we have a student who is willing to say that he saw a gun really changes the situation and I want them involved. The student who contacted me with concerns has outlined Vamsi's behavior as of a troubled person who may be a danger and may fit that of a shooter. I just want you to know I am pursuing this one and would very much like to talk with you about it when you have time. I can be free any time to update you.” Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 70 of 125
    • Page - 71 - of 125 339. On 17th June 2009, John Gallagher wrote an email to Defendant Pete Walton and asked him to respond to his email immediately and asked him to conform whether Plaintiff showed him what appeared to him to be a holstered pistol79 under his overcoat in the Duke Campus or not. 340. On 17th June 2009, Defendant Pete Walton responded to John Gallagher via email and said that, “What I saw appeared to be a holstered pistol on his hip, but I cannot be certain80 and never saw it again”. 341. On 17th June 2009, John Gallagher replied and asked Defendant Pete Walton, “Pete - thanks. Did Eugene witness this? He was there, too, right?” 342. On 17th June 2009, Defendant Pete Walton responded to John Gallagher via email, “John, I was standing in front of Vamsi, Eugene was standing to the side. So, I am not sure if he saw 79 Pete: It would be very helpful to me if you could please send me a brief statement that summarizes the conversation you and I had regarding the incident with Vamsi during which he showed you what appeared to be a holstered pistol under his coat while on campus. Time is an issue, so I would appreciate your attending to this matter at your earliest convenience. My memory of our discussion is that you were in conversation with Vamsi and Eugene White, I believe. And during that conversation, Vamsi revealed to you that he had previously carried a gun on a regular basis when in India, and that he has continued this practice in some way while in the US. If my memory is correct he expressed some beliefs or lack-of-concern regarding US law around firearms and his compliance with those laws. And, most importantly, that he showed you what appeared to you to be a holstered pistol under his overcoat and that this occurred on campus. If you would please send me a summary that addresses these points in your own words, and clarifies or corrects any of the points I raised, or includes any additional information I may have omitted, it would be a great help. If you are not willing to provide a statement or if you cannot do so by tomorrow, please let me know, as this is an important matter and the timing could be significant. If I can provide any additional information or clarify any aspect of my request please don't hesitate to call me at any time.- John Gallagher 80 I just received your email and voice mail. You almost have my exact thoughts in your email's body. I do want to clarify one thing. Vamsi did not express any specific lack of concern or disdain with US law, but rather, ignorance for its differing from Indian law. I would also like to note that since administrative action was taken previously, I have noticed a significant change in his behavior. He is much more passive and inquisitive than previously, when he was brash and confrontational. I will try to recount what I can remember from that evening last year. I approached Eugene and Vamsi in the corridors of the R. David Thomas center after Friday classes during mid-evening hours. We discussed firearms, specifically handguns. Vamsi commented on his "right" to carry firearms due to his stature in India. When I asked him about general knowledge firearm owners should know, I was not convinced he understood all the concepts. When I asked him if he carried with him and had a concealed-carry permit he replied he did carry it but did not have the permit. He was wearing a long, khaki trench coat and gestured like he was carrying it at that moment. What I saw appeared to be a holstered pistol on his hip, but I cannot be certain and never saw it again. Immediately following that action, I excused myself and returned to my room in the Thomas center. These are the events that transpired that evening to the best of my recollection. If you would like to discuss them further, please contact me. - Pete Walton. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 71 of 125
    • Page - 72 - of 125 the same thing I did, or if anything at all. He did not express the same concern as I did after that instance, so I doubt he saw anything. It would be best to contact him and ask that question. Thanks, Pete” 343. While this is going on 18th June 2009 Defendant Moira Ringo wrote another email81 to John Gallagher under the email subject “Security Issue in WEMBA” and informed that a female classmate of mine shared with her that she investigated getting a firearm and firearm permit as a way to manage her concerns about her safety in class. She is a calm, sober, intelligent person, and the only reason that she did not get the gun was she found out that it was illegal to carry a gun on campus. Good decision on her part, but it still left the concern unanswered. I share this with you so that you know that these concerns are way beyond Defendant Pete Walton and her, and all the work involved will be a way to give some peace to several people. 344. On 18th June 2009, John Gallagher wrote an email to Captain Rekayi Isley, Duke University Police about his email conversations with Defendant Pete Walton and forwarded email to Captain Rekayi Isley by saying, “I want to follow up on our conversation yesterday. Per your advice, I contacted the student who claimed to witness our Weekend Executive MBA student Vamsidhar (Vamsi) Vurimindi carrying a gun on campus last November. I have included the e-mail exchange with Pete Walton below. I would very much like you to read through this material and give me your thoughts about any appropriate next steps”. 345. On 18th June 2009, after John Gallagher contacted Captain Rekayi Isley, Duke University Police, Lynn Taylor wrote an email82 to John Gallagher and said that she was told that she 81 I am very grateful for the time and consideration that you have showed. I completely understand the complexity of the issue and that you probably heard some new information over the past few days -- not easy. A female classmate of mine shared with me that she investigated getting a firearm and firearm permit as a way to manage her concerns about her safety in class. She is a calm, sober, intelligent person, and the only reason that she did not get the gun was she found out that it was illegal to carry a gun on campus. Good decision on her part, but it still left the concern unanswered. I share this with you so that you know that these concerns are way beyond Pete and me, and all the work involved will be a way to give some peace to several people. 82 “Hello Dean Gallagher, I was told that I should forward this to you. I do not know what he is referring to and I have never received a response to my reply below. Thank you, Lynn Taylor” Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 72 of 125
    • Page - 73 - of 125 should forward Plaintiff’ email enquiry to her and said that she don’t know what plaintiff is referring and didn’t receive a response to her email from Plaintiff. 346. Plaintiff didn’t send a reply to Lynn Taylor’ response, because Plaintiff wanted to talk to her in person and when Plaintiff go to the campus, Defendant Moira Ringo make it known to Plaintiff that she is the one who had been propagating that Plaintiff lacks academic integrity and had a history of academic dishonesty; and indulged in adultery and Plaintiff didn’t bothered to respond to Lynn Taylor and Lynn Taylor didn’t either asked Plaintiff for an explanation. 347. Duke Administration didn’t inform Plaintiff about the fresh allegations, accusations and concerns about Plaintiff that were made by Defendants Moira Ringo, Pete Walton, Lynn Taylor. 348. Nevertheless, through June 2009, Defendants were actively shut-out Plaintiff and Plaintiff told to Duke Administration about defendants’ abusive conduct towards Plaintiff. Nevertheless, Duke Administration didn’t take any action against Defendants. 349. In July 2009, Duke suspended one of the Plaintiffs’ classmates for an honor code violation. At that time, Sudheer Dharanikota started a rumor among the student community that “Vamsi made an honor code complaint against another student, which caused Duke to suspend that student”. 350. In continuation to that, when Plaintiff standing in the queue to pick-up Plaintiff’ lunch, Sudheer Dharanikota gathered Rajiv Patnaik and Wilker Ambooken around Plaintiff and told to them that “Vamsi made a honor code complaint against Aparna Batra, which caused Duke to suspend Aparna Batra” so he will kill Vamsi”. Immediately, Plaintiff enquired Sudheer Dharanikota what made him to go the extent to kill the Plaintiff. At that time, Defendant Sudheer Dharanikota’ response was vague and abrupt. 351. In fact Plaintiff didn’t file any complaints against any student other than reporting defendant’s verbal attacks against Plaintiff to Duke. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 73 of 125
    • Page - 74 - of 125 352. In July 2009, while Plaintiff is actively participating in an online discussion about the federal government proposed Health care reforms, on 21st July 2008, Amit Khare contacted the Plaintiff and asked the Plaintiff not to post the Plaintiff’ opinions. 353. In response to Amit Khare’ request, Plaintiff responded to Amit Khare and told him that “I thought that people who are not in HSM and really interested to know the quick facts about the healthcare system would read. At the same time, I am also benefiting through contribution to the board in terms of gaining clarity and improving my perceptions about the concepts of healthcare policy.” 354. In response Amit Khare replied back to Plaintiff and told that, “Point I was trying to make was, writing such long long long emails kills interest of others (and eventually kills a good thread).” 355. In response to Amit Khare reply Plaintiff responded as, “Amit, Thank you for making a point, but I disagree with you. I think that people are not contributing to this thread is that they are busy with other work, don't have time to respond etc., what is going on at your end? Is everything OK with you?” 356. On 25th July 2009, during Term 5, Corporate Finance (Finance 351W) final exam Plaintiff was anxious about the exam and sitting quietly in his seat in the classroom. At that time, Gregory Valentine looking at Plaintiff and suggested to Plaintiff “sell your psycho stimulants to other students in the black market”. 357. Immediately, Plaintiff asked Gregory Valentine what made him to say like that. Then, Gregory Valentine replied to Plaintiff that “ Vamsi you take three medications (1) xxxxx (2) xxxxx, (3) xxxxx” and I know you have an excess supply of (1) xxxxxx, psycho stimulant medication with you and that is why I am suggesting to you to sell in the black market and make money”. 358. Plaintiff was shocked and asked Gregory Valentine, “How did you get my medication information”. Defendant Gregory Valentine’ response was vague and abrupt. 359. At that time, Johnny Williams, shouted to the class and looking at Plaintiff that “Vamsi is acting up again”. Soon after, Plaintiff informed to Duke Administration and to Plaintiff’ classmates through Duke online web portal that Plaintiff’ Privacy at R David Thomas Center Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 74 of 125
    • Page - 75 - of 125 has invaded, because Plaintiff’ confidential medication details has become public, while Plaintiff staying at R David Thomas Center. 360. Between July 25th to 28th July 2009, Plaintiff attempted to express his displeasure over Amit Khare trying to shutout the Plaintiff and protected Amit Khare identity in the public forum. Immediately, James Morgan jumped into the conversation, said that it is a “Dick Move” on part of Plaintiff to publically express his displeasure for Amit Khare trying to shutout Plaintiff, even Plaintiff protected Amit Khare identity in the public forum. In response to Plaintiff and James Morgan back and forth emails in the public forum, on 28th July 2009, Defendant Seth Gillespie warned the Plaintiff that Plaintiff’ classmates would destroy Plaintiff reputation through the 'word of mouth'. 361. While, Plaintiff has been verbally assaulted in the public forums, on 28th July 2009, Jason Sundberg posted that “I'm attempting to end the airing of grievances thread with an unthought provoking recap of Jack Handey's Deep Thoughts”. 362. Because, Jason Sundberg work for Accenture and had direct contacts with Plaintiff’ colleagues at Wyeth Pharmaceuticals and Plaintiff’ classmates made mockery about Plaintiff’ demotion; and Jason Sundberg made derogatory remarks about Plaintiff’ sexuality, Plaintiff was unhappy with Jason Sundberg. 363. In addition Plaintiff was unhappy with Jason Sundberg when Plaintiff express his displeasure, Jason Sundberg attempted to shut-out by dubbing that Plaintiff is “airing his grievances” and to begin with he is one of the culprit in propagating lies about Plaintiff’ work life, Plaintiff responded to Jason Sundberg by saying that he can’t have fun at the expense of others. Basically, Plaintiff reprints Gordon Matthew Thomas Sumner CBE, known by his stage name ‘Sting’s lyrics83. 83 “Every breath you take And every move you make And every word you say And every claim you stake And every step you take And every game you play And every smile you fake And every single day I’ll be watching you I always enjoy bonfire But not at the expense of others. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 75 of 125
    • Page - 76 - of 125 364. On 28th July 2009, in response Jason Sundberg replied to Plaintiff stating that “Vamsi, My post was in no way addressed towards you. It was simply an attempt to change the topic since some of the below threads were getting a bit intense. However, I do enjoy Sting. Best Regards, Jason”. 365. On 28th July 2009, in response to Plaintiff’ posting, Gregory Valentine posted, “Well Sting's lyrics were missing that crucial ingredient – threats”. 366. On 28th July 2009, in response to Greg Valentine posting, another student Srini Chennamaraja posted, “Greg, I see lot of edits. Are you trying to be politically correct?. 367. In fact and indeed Greg Valentine repeatedly corrected his web posting, so no one know what he originally posted. 368. On 29th July 2009, Defendant Robert Ross called Alaina Filkin, and expressed his concerns about Plaintiff’ 28th July 2009 online positing addressed to Jason Sundberg on Duke web- portal by exaggerating as safety concerns for other students and asked Alaina Filkin to contact Defendant Nathaniel Hawkins for more specific details. 369. On 29th July 2009, Defendant Nathaniel Hawkins sends an email to John Gallagher and Katherine Amato, and said that his father who holds a PhD in Psychology, suggested that Plaintiff’ posts are suggestive84 of a possible “paranoid psychosis” affliction; and asked John I’ll be watching you I’ll be watching you”. 84 My apologies for bringing to your attention yet another issue for the surely infamous WEMBA '09 class. I think it might be pertinent for someone on your staff with a psychology background to keep an eye on Vamsi's posts and behavior until we finish with term 5, and finally graduate out of your hair. Lately he has posted two somewhat disturbing threads, among many others that simply don't make sense. The "Jack Handey" thread and "Privacy at The R. David Thomas Center" thread in the Student Lounge, are quite telling. I've forwarded and discussed some ofthis behavior with my father, who holds a PhD in Psychology. He suggested that these posts are suggestive of a possible "paranoid psycosis" affliction. He opted to have me write you rather that claim to be able to diagnose over the internet, but if either of you would like to speak with him on the matter, he is more than accommodating. I don't think anything can actually be "done" about this, but I think we (the class) would feel better if you were keeping an eye on it. Perhaps Alan Lind is someone whom you could utilize in this instance. Safety is my only concern. I've discussed some of this with classmates in order to curb any more posts to the Platform directed at Vamsi. Anything that he might construe as antagonizing. I think it has worked. My only goal in this matter is to complete 5 more weekends and a graduation ceremony safely, and my conscience would not rest had I not alerted you all while I still had the chance to act preventatively. I have considered letting this slide, but after discussions with about half of a dozen of my most trusted colleagues, we have all agreed that it might be time to drop you a note. I am copying a few lines below from my father and a line on Thought Disorders that I think pertains. Thank you, -Nat Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 76 of 125
    • Page - 77 - of 125 Gallagher and Katherine Amato to keep an eye on Plaintiff’ posts until he finish with Term 5, and graduate out of John Gallagher and Katherine Amato hair. 370. Defendant Nathaniel Hawkins, along with other defendants, after they failed to get expel Plaintiff based on the false complaints that Plaintiff carried and showed gun in the campus; and had ‘run-ins’ with them, defendants concocted a brand new compelling reason, and duly supported by an expert opinion to expel Duke to expel Plaintiff. 371. On 31st July 2009, Gregory Stotsenberg, Lieutenant, Duke University Police updated the Case Supplemental Report , by saying that apparently Mr. Walton had been one of the student spreading rumors about Vamsi and when administration finally tracked down who alleged to have seen a weapon, Walton then attempted to say it could have been a cell phone. In addition, Gregory Stotsenberg reported that John Gallagher believes that Walton might have made up the story to other students band when interviewed by Duke Police, he was back tracking85. Probably an early paranoid psychotic. They can be very dangerous - examples include Kool-Aid Jim Jones and David Koresh; They are usually pretty odd and alienated until the age of 40 or so and then flip into complete psychosis when they realize the nature of the plot against them; Getting awfully disorganized stay away from him and let others get high on his radar. This guy is getting more and more decompensated; He's feeling some pressure and he's blaming the school and his classmates - the "paranoid illumination" has occurred or is about to http://www.helplinepsychology.com/paranoid-disorders.html;Tell everybody to be careful and try to disappear off his scope. If you need me to send a note to the administration let me know. Those were my dad's opinions. I found this on wiki: From the wiki article on paranoid psychosis http:// en. wiki pedia. org/ wiki/Psy chosis Thought disorder: Thought disorder describes an underlying disturbance to conscious thought and is classified largely by its effects on speech and writing. Affected persons show loosening of associations, that is, a disconnection and disorganization of the semantic content of speech and writing. In the severe form speech becomes incomprehensible and it is known as "word-salad".” 85 “On 07/31/09 I was contacted by John Gallagher on this case. He stated that a recent concern came up on Mr. Vamsi. He said he had been getting several emails from students about this student again. I had him forward me all the emails and reviewed them. Gallagher also said that a student named Mr. Pete Walton claimed to have seen Vamsi with a weapon on campus but was now back tracking. Apparently Mr. Walton had been one of the students spreading rumors about Vamsi and when administration finally tracked down who alleged to have seen a weapon Walton then attempted to say it could have been a cell phone. Gallagher believes that Walton might have made up the story to other students but then when interviewed by staff was back tracking. I reviewed all of the emails then contact Gallagher back. It appears that Vamsi is very difficult to get along with in the program and that he may also have some psychiatric needs. I told Mr. Gallagher I would look into it. I spoke with Mr. Walton over the phone and had him give me a play by play of the alleged incident and the context of the incident. Apparently Vamsi was in a conversation with another student at Fuqua about how when he was in India he had special political status that allowed him to carry a handgun. Mr. Walton being a hunter and gun advocate entered into the conversation. According to Walton he did not believe Vamsi knew anything about guns and began to confront his knowledge. At Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 77 of 125
    • Page - 78 - of 125 372. Immediately, after Duke University Police finds that there is no truth in the accusation that Plaintiff carried a gun in the campus, on 31st July 2009, Defendant Shana Keating wrote an email to John Gallagher and Katharine Amato and expresses her concerns about Plaintiff’ response to another Jason Sandburg taking a potshot towards Plaintiff by dubbing the Plaintiff’ response to Jason Sandburg as Plaintiff is "watching her" because Plaintiff mentioned a word ‘bonfire’ in his response and another student named Jason Tan had a bonfire party at his house and to which she didn’t attended, but she concerned that Plaintiff used a word ‘bonfire’ in his reply86. one point according to Walton, Vamsi opened his jacket and revealed a under arm holster which may have contained a small handgun. But Mr. Walton quickly retracted and said that it could have been a cell phone. In an interview with Gallagher Mr. Walton had said earlier that it was a hip holster not a under the arm holster. I confronted Mr. Walton with the discrepancy and he retracted even more. I thanked him for his time and gave him my contact information. I updated Chief Dailey on the threat assessment. He suggested giving Amy Powell a heads up about the concerns over Mr. Vamsi. Lastly I updated Gallagher and gave him some resources for dealing with Mr. Vamsi. He thanked me” 86 “I am writing to express concerns over Vamsi Vurimindi’ recent contributions to the Student Lounge bulletin board. These posts have added under the headings of Health Plan, Privacy at R David Thomas Center, and New Topic - Jack Handey's Deep Thoughts (not thoughts about Vamsi's posts paint an nArAnc'''' and paranoia. His are confrontational and quite. I am disturbed Vamsi's first post under the "Deep Thoughts" thread. The reason this particularly frightens me is because Jason Tan had an end-of-term party at his house on night to which he invited our entire class. There was a bonfire at the party and about 20 attendees (according to Jason; I did not attend). Vamsi was not one of the attendees, he posted the following: Every breath you take And every move you make And every word you say And every claim you stake And every step you take And every game you play And every smile you fake And every single day III be watching you I always enjoy bonfire But not at the expense of others. III be watching you III be watching you If I, a single woman who lives had hosted the bonfire and seen that post a few days later, I would feel unsafe in my own home and worry that he is "watching me." This may sound like I am overreacting, but I believe Vamsi is capable of initiating a situation that is, at the least, confrontational, and at most, violent. Classmates when we meet for class and I worry about the safety of our family and for Vamsi was on my team in terms 3 and 4 and the more I know about him, the more seems. For an unbiased opinion, you may wish to consult Mark Brown, with whom Vamsi, my team, and I met during Term 4. I know the administration is in a difficult position. How can you remove a student on the grounds of sheer speculation from fellow classmates who may or may not be "ganging on a classmate? However, there must be enough red flags by now to take some action with Vamsi to protect integrity Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 78 of 125
    • Page - 79 - of 125 373. In fact Plaintiff’ response to Jason Sandburg potshot at Plaintiff; and Jason Tan having a term end party at his house are completely unrelated events, but Defendant Shana Keating craftily attempted to make it appear to be seemingly related events; and then complained she would feel unsafe in her own home and worry that Plaintiff is watching her. 374. In addition Defendant Shana Keating said to John Gallagher that her attempt to make it appear unrelated events may sound like that she is overreacting, but she truly believe Plaintiff is capable of initiating a situation that is, at the least, confrontational, and at most, violent. 375. In addition Defendant Shana Keating demanded John Gallagher to take action against Plaintiff, because they showed enough red flags by all this time to protect the integrity of the Duke brand, and most importantly, the safety of faculty, staff, and classmates. 376. Immediately after Defendant Shana Keating wrote an email to John Gallagher, on 31st July 2009, Ellen Wilbur wrote an email to John Gallagher that Mark Brown told her none of Duke Administrative staff shouldn’t be surprised if Duke learned that Plaintiff had done some horrible act (like shooting people or crashing his car)87. That was reason enough to be concerned. 377. Plaintiff believe that Defendants Robert Ross, Shana Keating and Robert Ball told to Mark Brown that Plaintiff murdered people either by shooting people or crashing his car and that is why Mark Brown told to Ellen Wilbur that Duke Administrative staff shouldn’t be surprised of the Duke brand, and most importantly, the safety of and classmates. Thank you for me to air my concerns to you, John and Kathie. As always, I appreciate the administration's openness to our comments/concerns and I trust that you will handle this situation in a manner you deem appropriate.” 87 John, Libby Webb is the Associate Director of CAPS. She will be out of the office for two weeks starting Monday. She can speak with you at 3:45 this afternoon and will be awaiting your call at 660-1005. She is someone whom Kathie and I spoke with earlier in the year (mid-January) about our concerns about this same student. Her email address is webb@duke.edu if you want to forward along to her the email that you sent to the Lt which contained Shana's concerns. Also, I did see Mark Brown after lunch when I was in Pam Brown's office. He did a team intervention around March 1 with this student's team as they entered Term 4. Robert Ross was extremely vocal about his team concerns in a variety of emails that v. was copied on in preparation for this meeting. Shana too was forthcoming about her concerns. Mark is in a faculty meeting until 4pm but said he would be happy to update you. He said that he would be on campus tomorrow too if needed as he will be here for the launch of the daytime program. His parting remark to me was that none of us would be surprised if we learned that this student had done some horrible act (like shooting people or crashing his car). That was reason enough to be concerned. Let me know how I can assist. E Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 79 of 125
    • Page - 80 - of 125 if Duke learned that Plaintiff had done some horrible act (like shooting people or crashing his car). 378. On 7th August 2009, Alaina Filkin contacted Susan Donnelly at Wharton and enquired about Plaintiff as, “Kathie Amato asked me to follow up with you regarding a former Wharton attendee, Vamsidhar (Vamsi) Vurimindi. It is our understanding that he completed a certificate for working professionals at Wharton in either 2007 or 2008. Vamsi is a current student in our Weekend Executive MBA Program. The reason we are contacting you is because Vamsi has recently been exhibiting some unusual behavior and several of our students have voiced their concerns. In an effort to alleviate these concerns, we want to reassure that Vamsi is not a threat to himself or others. We do not want to violate any of the University privacy laws, however, if there is anything you think we should be aware of based on his time at Wharton, we would greatly appreciate it. Should you have questions, please feel free to contact Kathie or myself. Regards, Alaina” 379. On 9th August 2009, Barnes Barton wrote an email88 to John Gallagher and said that he had several extended discussions in the last few weeks concerning the Honor Code violations and several classmates expressed serious concern that Vamsi Vurimindi was the student convicted. They were worried that if Vamsi was the person, he might do something violent and aggressive. Obviously, now that we have started the last half of term 5, the class realizes that he is not the student in question. These people confirmed several incidents that have 88 “John, I have had several extended discussions in the last few weeks concerning the Honor Code violation. As I discussed the situation (without revealing the student in question), several classmates expressed serious concern that Vamsi Vurimindi was the student convicted. They were worried that if Vamsi was the person, he might do something violent and aggressive. Obviously, now that we have started the last half of term 5, the class realizes that he is not the student in question. These people confirmed several incidents that have occurred during the program, to include unprovoked aggression against no fewer than 5 people in our class. This pattern of aggressive and bizarre behavior has a substantial group in our class anxious, to say the least. In fact, I heard this past weekend that several students in our class are strongly considering withdrawing from some of the graduation events due to their concern over Vamsi's erratic behavior. As a judicial representative of the class, and having several of my classmates placing trust in me to follow up with the administration, I feel that it is important to pass along these concerns to you directly. The multiple issues Vamsi has had in participating and supporting other class members has caused them, and me, to question why he has not been visibly disciplined. While I am sure that events are occurring of which we are unaware, there are a number of our class that feel as if their safety is not being taken seriously due to the opacity of any disciplinary actions taken so far. The academic environment at Fuqua is precious to all of us, and we hold the administration accountable to protect that environment on behalf of the best interests of the class at large. I am available to discuss further if needed.- Barnes Barton” Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 80 of 125
    • Page - 81 - of 125 occurred during the program, to include unprovoked aggression against no fewer than 5 people in our class. This pattern of aggressive and bizarre behavior has a substantial group in our class anxious, to say the least. In fact, I heard this past weekend that several students in our class are strongly considering withdrawing from some of the graduation events due to their concern over Vamsi's erratic behavior. 380. In response on 10th August 2009, John Gallagher wrote an email to Barnes Barton89 and said that I sent some individual e-mails out to the students who had contacted me over the past couple of months and asked them to not interpret silence as a lack of attention or care and encouraged them to contact me directly so we could talk about any lingering concerns they might have. 381. On 10th August 2009, after John Gallagher wrote an email to Barnes Barton, Defendant Shana Keating publically accused90 Plaintiff is stalking her under a online posting thread 89 “Barnes: I very much appreciate your coming forward with these concerns. On Friday I sent some individual e- mails out to the students who had contacted me over the past couple of months. I asked them to not interpret silence as a lack of attention or care. I also encouraged them to contact me directly so we could talk about any lingering concerns they might have. If you know of students to whom I should send such a message, please pass their names along so I can contact them and offer to have a discussion with them. You are right, of course. When you say "I am sure that events are occurring of which we are not unaware" you are right. A great deal of resource has been brought to bear on a range of issues raised over the past several months. That said, I am not able to post a message to the class that outlines the issues or the activities undertaken. There are important issues of student privacy here. On Friday Kathie Amato and I, along with Alaina, met with the class representatives over breakfast and again over lunch to discuss issues related to this situation. We were trying to learn more about the concerns of the class - how deep and how widespread - and to discuss various communication options we have available to us. One element of the strategy we came up with is for me to reach out to individuals who have concerns and offer to talk with them directly. So, you may either contact the students who have contacted you and extend my offer to them, or you can get their permission to share their name and I will reach out to them myself. There are elements of this situation that are very unique and frustrating. I feel that if we could communicate more or at least more openly about these issues it might help reduce the concerns that people have. In this situation I think silence exacerbates the tension. Perhaps if I can speak with some of the most concerned people I can at least help people know what steps have been taken to assess and reduce any risk. Thanks again, jg”. 90 “Say you (a woman, single, living alone) had a party with a bonfire at your house. A certain invitee doesn't attend and then posts this message somewhere publicly the next week. Read ALL OF IT - especially the last four lines. Every breath you take And every move you make And every word you say And every claim you stake And every step you take And every game you play And every smile you fake And every single day Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 81 of 125
    • Page - 82 - of 125 heading “Random Question about Stalkers” asked to read to the last four lines (1) I always enjoy bonfire (2) But not at the expense of others.(3) III be watching you (4) III be watching you ; and asked, “Would you, or would you not, consider issuing a restraining order” 382. In response to Defendant Shana Keating’ accusation, on 10th August 2009 Defendant Brooke Balcom responded by making further accusation against as “The whole experience and class would be better off without him. He is absolutely scary!!! Why the administration can't do something about him is crazy to me.” 383. On 10th August 2009, as per John Gallagher advice, Alaina Filkin contacted Defendant Brooke Balcom and told her that she has been reading women's lounge (A Duke web portal has only access to female students), and told her if she has any concerns, she can always contact her (Alaina Filkin ) or John Gallagher. 384. In addition, Alaina Filkin told to Defendant Brooke Balcom that John Gallagher has been researching the situation and would be happy to discuss any concerns you might have. We by no means want you to feel unsafe. 385. In response, on 10th August 2009, Brooke Balcom responded to Alaina Filkin and asked why Duke doesn’t take any action91, instead of researching? 386. While, John Gallagher and Alaina Filkin are in receipt of several emails from other students, demanding an action against Plaintiff and Duke Administration initiated a fresh police III be watching you I always enjoy bonfire But not at the expense of others. III be watching you III be watching you Would you, or would you not, consider issuing a restraining order?” 91 “Alaina: I expressed my concerns to John in Term 4 and explained that I felt unsafe. At this point, we will hopefully be graduated and not have to worry about him. But, there have been so many instances of him aggressively confronting classmates; I really don't know why Duke can't do something (action instead of research) about it. He is clearly unstable with him and there have been several instances where he's demonstrated that. Thanks for the offer though” Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 82 of 125
    • Page - 83 - of 125 investigation against Plaintiff, on 11th August 2009, wrote an email92 to Plaintiff and said that there are no issues or concern here at all, so don't be alarmed. 387. On 31st August 2009, Alaina Filkin wrote an email93 to John Gallagher saying that Defendant Daniel Paschke wanted to have an update on Plaintiff’ situation. 388. On 6th October 2009, John Gallagher wrote an email to Plaintiff saying that he would like to talk to Plaintiff, because Plaintiff told to Alaina Filkin and Lola Martin that he had some stresses with his classmates. 389. On 6th October 2009, in response, Plaintiff thanked94 John Gallagher, Alaina Filkin and Lola Martin for the clarification and concern showed towards Plaintiff. 390. On 8th October 2009, Susan Donnelly from Wharton School of Business, UPenn responded to Alaina Filkin, in connection to her 7th August 2009 email regarding Plaintiff as “Hello Alaina, I hope this message finds you well ! I want to apologize for taking so long to get back to you in regard to your request about one of your students, Vamsidhar (Vamsi) Vurimindi. I recall checking his record at the time you sent your message, but didn't get to reply. I'm really sorry about this, but I know it was a very hectic time in my life at that time. My 92 Vamsi: This is not any kind of official note - there is no issue or concern here at all, so don't be alarmed! When you began the program, you and I said we would sit down and talk. We got distracted with issue after and we never really did just sit and talk. I realize that you only have four weekends left in your program! I would very much like to have an opportunity to talk when there is no "official" issue to discuss. If you would still like to find a time to just chat for a let me know what work for you. I am in town for the August 21-22 weekend and your last two weekends. 4-5. But, I believe I will be traveling during If you would still like to talk a bit, please just let me know - we can either take breakfast or lunch together, or just find some time that works for both of our schedules. All the best, and congratulations on nearly finishing - it's not far to go now. jg 93 Hello All, This Friday, we'll be having a class rep meeting with the WE 09 class. It will be at 7:15 a.m. in the Thomas Center. They'd like to get an update on the past situation with Vamsi, discuss the Entrepreneurship course, and career service offerings post-graduation. Is one or two of you available to attend this meeting? Thanks, ALaina 94 Dean Gallagher, Thank you for the clarification and concern showed by you, Alaina and Lola. I am hoping that your global program trip is successful. As far as my school work, I am doing fine. I made a casual comment about my feelings towards very few classmates and not directed towards the majority of the class. I do know that my classmates have a right to like or don't like a person and it is not against the law. Further, I don't have the necessary talent to be liked by everyone. Otherwise everything is normal and usual business competition among the classmates. I am hoping that my email gives you the needed comfort, so, we can cancel our telephone call towards the above cause. If there is any issue that is a concern to me, I will definitely communicate with you. Don't think that I don't want to have a conversation with you; I love to talk to you, but on a different subject and occasion. I will see you in the campus to say hello on this coming weekend. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 83 of 125
    • Page - 84 - of 125 husband had heart valve replacement surgery just a few days before that, and I was in & out of the office for a few weeks. In checking Vamsidhar's record, it doesn't appear that there were any problems concerning him. We didn't anything good or bad from the faculty or his classmates. He completed a total of 4 of the 6 classes that he needed to complete the Business Essentials Certificate Program. His record indicates that he took a "leave of absence" in early August 2008. I guess that was the time that he was starting his MBA program with Duke University. I hope things have improved since the time you inquired about him”. 391. On 8th October 2009, Kevin Hoch95 contacted Gregory Stotsenberg, Lieutenant, Duke University Police and asked for plainclothes police officer96 for Friday, October 9 and Saturday, October 10 to be in the building during the final weekend of classes. 392. On 9th October 2009, just before the start of the class party, Plaintiff is relaxing in the R. David Thomas Center lounge and at that time three classmates Wilker Ambooken, Vijay Karunakaran and Mani Gupta approached the Plaintiff and asking whether Plaintiff is attending the class party or not. 393. Plaintiff told to them that “I don’t want to be an object of ridicule, so I will stay out from the class party”. At the time David Mitchell approached Plaintiff and other three classmates, and suggested to three classmates “take this Mother Fucker to the class function the rest will be 95 Assistant Director, Executive MBA Programs, The Fuqua School of Business, Duke University 96 Greg, I work with the Weekend MBA Program at the Fuqua School of Business. I believe, John Gallagher, the Associate Dean of Executive MBA Programs, spoke to you once before about a student situation we have in our Weekend MBA Program. We have a student that has gotten into multiple verbal confrontations with his fellow students through the tenure of his program. These confrontations had diminished but have recently arisen again. Our staff has had multiple conversations with the student and there does not appear to be any legal reason we cannot have him attend his final weekend of classes. However, we still have a concern about his atypical behavior and conflicts with students. To exercise increased caution we were interested in bringing in a plainclothes police officer for Friday, October 9 and Saturday, October 10 to be in the building during the final weekend of classes. We realize that this is a late request but hope that there is a way to accommodate it. I wanted to send you a note to start our conversation and would like to also speak with you on the phone. If there is a preferred time for you please let me know and I will call you then. Thank you in advance for your assistance. Thank you, Kevin. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 84 of 125
    • Page - 85 - of 125 taken care by its self” and further made hand gestures to the three classmates to indulge the Plaintiff into trouble. 394. Plaintiff told to the three classmates that “I will come and join the party little later” and Plaintiff attended the class party between 7:00 to 8:15 PM. 395. As soon, Plaintiff entered the class party room, a well dressed person started starring at Plaintiff and initially, Plaintiff thought that he is a Duke's professor or may be a distinguished guest. However, that person starring at Plaintiff and felt uncomfortable and Plaintiff introduced himself to that person and asked him, whether he is a professor at Duke. Then, that person replied that he works with Duke Police department and here on a patrol duty tonight. 396. On 9th October 2009, during the time, Plaintiff presented in the class function hall, Defendant Moira Ringo many times verbally assaulted Plaintiff. 397. On 9th October 2009, John Michael Harlow, Sanjay Mishra and few other classmates gathered around Plaintiff and called Plaintiff as a "Pimp". Then Plaintiff quietly asked them what made them to say like that. At that time they replied to Plaintiff that “because you are a pimp”. Plaintiff was shocked and thought that this is a strategy to irritate the Plaintiff to react in front of police officer, so Plaintiff left the party room immediately. 398. On 9th October 2009, Plaintiff wrote an email97 to John Gallagher about the presence of police in the class party and snooping and shadowing Plaintiff in the Duke campus and told to John Gallagher about his earlier statement that "I don't have the necessary talent to be liked by everyone" is a over statement. But it is a handy work of these defendants who 97 Dean Gallagher, This is further to my last email regarding my casual comment about my feelings towards some of classmates, my statement that, "I don't have the necessary talent to be liked by everyone" is a over statement. But it is a handy work of the classmates who conspired together with criminal intention. Further these classmates made several discriminating comments and propagated lies about me in the school. Regarding this we spoke in length earlier and 1 don't want to file my formal complaint with Duke University. But, for the last few weeks, the same batch of students is making several discriminatory comments, which are against the laws of this country. Further, these students are conspiring against me with criminal intention and inflicting pain on me. Even further, in today’s evening function, I have been constantly watched by a police officer in plain clothes and few students pointed me to the police-officer in plain clothes. I am not sure, why this police officer is keeping a watch on me. I am sure he made several observations on how these students are harassing me for nothing. I am really concerned about my safety and security in Fuqua Campus and decided to file a formal complaint to you in this regard and forward my complaint before 15th October 2009. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 85 of 125
    • Page - 86 - of 125 conspired together with criminal intention to get me expelled from Duke. In addition, Plaintiff told to John Gallagher that he is concern about his safety and security in Duke Campus and decided to file a formal complaint against the Defendants. 399. On 9th October 2009, Plaintiff made an appeal titled as “A gentle appeal”98 via Duke Web portal to Plaintiff’ classmates and asked why some handful of students awarding me the titles "Mother Fucker" or "Liar" or "Cocky Person". 400. On 10th October 2009, Alaina Filkin contacted John Fox, Duke University Police and send Plaintiff’ picture and his class schedule for the day with room assignments. 98 I did notice a well-dressed person who is staring at me in the WEMBA 2009 class party between 7:00 PM to 8: 15 PM. Initially, I thought that he is a Duke's professor or may be a distinguished guest and probably starring at me, because he liked my grey pin stripes suite that tailored to fit my body like a glove. However, after a while, I felt uncomfortable and introduced myself to the person and asked him, whether he is a professor at Duke. The person replied that he works with police department and here on a patrol duty tonight. While the police officer is staring at me, few respected classmates made a shocking comment and called me "Pimp". I thought that this is a strategy to irritate me and get me wild in front of police officer. Further, I felt that this police officer in plain clothes invading my privacy and I do not want to give the irrational classmates an opportunity to trap me. Therefore, I left the party room early. I am making an appeal to this classmate to explain me in person or send me an email, about why would they think that, I should deserve this respected title as 'Pimp'? or What great achievements of mine warranted them to award the "title". Again, he is not the first student who tried to award this title. There are about 5 or 6 handful of WEMBA 2009 classmates also awarded me the titles "Mother Fucker" or "Liar" or "Cocky Person". Another WEMBA 2009 classmate has a "crystal ball", and exactly knows my prescription medications and proudly shared with several other classmates. Luckily, none of my medications are not for any diseases that that I should be ashamed off. 1. Why are you so nasty and mean to me? 2. Did I do any harm to you? 3. Why did you choose to harass me? 4. Do you think that you can get away with this, because I am from a different country? Or 5. Do you mad at me because I do not follow the unspoken dress code of WEMBA 2009 class? Or 6. Do you mad at me because I do not have the same problems as you have? Or 7. Do you think that I am a 2nd grade citizen and you are 1st grade citizen and you are entitled to harass me? Whether you guys reply to this posting or not, I just want to let you know that I do have an option to stoop down to the same level and make you feel the same way that you wanted me to feel. However, I do not want to waste my energy on this non-productive stuff. I spend some energy to write this appeal, to let you know that your behavior is curtailing my fundamental civil rights and causing difficulties to my learning experience at Fuqua. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 86 of 125
    • Page - 87 - of 125 401. On 10th October 2009, in addition Alaina Filkin told to Duke University Police to be near the area of the classrooms, break room, library, or patio throughout the day; and if needed they would ask the police in the classrooms. 402. On 10th October 2009, after Alaina Filkin asked police to be in the Duke Campus, Defendant Daniel Paschke wrote an email to Alaina Filkin, saying that interesting post on the student lounge from Vamsi last night. Not a big deal but thought I would pass it along to make sure you saw it. In addition, Defendant Daniel Paschke told that Plaintiff has been asking several people this morning if they saw the cop last night and why he was there. 403. On 10th October 2009, in response, Alaina Filkin wrote back to Defendant Daniel Paschke, “Yes, we are aware of this and are on it. Kathie, John, and I have been communicating all morning - also talking with the "plain clothes" officer who is there today”. 404. On 10th October 2009, in afternoon, John Gallagher contacted Plaintiff and talked for about an hour and felt sorry for the stress that caused upon Plaintiff during his time at Duke and told to Plaintiff that most of the trouble is created by Defendants Robert Ball and Barnes Barton. At that time, Plaintiff didn’t asked John Gallagher as to how Defendants Robert Ball and Barnes Barton caused terrible situations to Plaintiff at Duke. 405. On 11th October 2009, after Plaintiff posted a message on Duke Web portal about his experience with presence of police in the class party, Plaintiff’ classmate Anna Gonowon wrote an email99 to Alaina Filkin and asked Duke to continue to have police during graduation ceremony. 99 Hi Alaina, You've probably heard from a lot of people, and, while I tend to ignore Vamsi, reading his message was somewhat amusing until I read the following portion: "Whether you guys reply to this posting or not, I just want to let you know that I do have an option to stoop down to the same level and make you feel the same way that you wanted me to feel." Although he is attempting to portray himself throughout most of the message as a victim, Vamsi presents himself as an unstable and unsettling person whenever one speaks to him. I am uncomfortable and feel unsafe around him. Reading a line like the above quote makes me question whether Vamsi poses a danger to everyone at Graduation. What if he "becomes wild" (as he stated in his most recent post) and does something that everyone could regret? I want to keep my loved ones and myself out of harm's way during an important event in Life -- Graduation in November. I just wanted to let you know that every time Vamsi speaks out loud or posts a message makes at least one person (me) feel quite uneasy and, frankly, as if something bad could happen. If there was a plainclothes policeman there, I appreciate that the Administration had one present, and I do ask that there continue to be plainclothes policemen at Graduation watching him. You can share this with Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 87 of 125
    • Page - 88 - of 125 406. On 11th October 2009, immediately, Alaina Filkin forwarded Anna Gonowon email to Katharine Amato, John Gallagher, Ellen Wilbur and Ben Sossa. In turn, Katharine Amato forwarded that email to William Boulding and in turn William Boulding instructed to deploy more plain clothes policeman at graduation ceremony. 407. On 11th October 2009, Katharine Amato wrote an email to William Boulding saying that “All is well” and I spoke with Alaina Filkin right after lunch on Saturday and she also indicated things were fine with the Weekend students. It appears that having Alaina Filkin and John Gallagher show up for lunch and having John Gallagher spend time with Vamsi sent the calming message we had hoped it would send. Thanks for spending most of your Saturday morning helping me sort through this. 408. On 15th October 2009, Defendant Daniel Paschke contacted Alaina Filkin via email100 and told her that few classmates drop him a note and asked him if Plaintiff is going to be at graduation and all those great questions. In addition, Defendant Daniel Paschke told that he is assuming that Plaintiff is attending graduation ceremony and told that he don’t think that Plaintiff is a threat, but he is curious to know what Duke is planning regarding graduation. 409. On 19th October 2009, Alaina Filkin responded to Defendant Daniel Paschke that John Gallagher met with Plaintiff on that Saturday afternoon (10th October 2009) for over an hour talking about different issues and Plaintiff concerns and Defendants concerns. John Gallagher feels that it finally “hit home”101 for Plaintiff. Administration, but I do ask that you do not share this with my classmates, especially Vamsi. I don't want to be on his "unfavored" list. Thanks, -Anna 100 Alaina, Hey there, I hope you are doing well and having a good week. My transition back to regular life has gone quite well and very fast. I have been in Florida for work since Sunday which is kind of a bummer but enjoying not having to do homework at night! Hey, I wanted to write and see if there was any follow up on the issues with Vamsi from this past weekend. I've had a few folks drop me a note and ask me if he was going to be at graduation and all those great questions. I am assuming he is and as I've said in the past, I don't think he is a threat but I'm curious if/what you guys are planning in regards for graduation. If you wouldn't mind dropping me a note so I can be informed, I would appreciate it. Thanks Alaina! DP 101 Hi Dan, Sorry to not reply more quickly - I was out sick Friday. Hope you enjoyed Florida! John met with Vamsi that Saturday afternoon for over an hour talking about different issues and concerns (both those that Vamsi has, and that the class has). John feels that it finally hit home for Vamsi how his actions (such as that post late Friday Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 88 of 125
    • Page - 89 - of 125 410. On 12th November 2009, Katherine Amato confirmed the availability of plainclothes policeman during graduation ceremonies on to John Gallagher and William Boulding as, “John, After I explained the entire situation to Lt. Stotsenberg (and I read him one of Vamsi's more recent posts), I was able to get agreement that we receive two truly undercover police officers (who will not be familiar to the students) in addition to our uniformed officer. Once Stotsenberg understood the extent to which the one officer's cover had been blown, and Vamsi's state of mind around that issue, he reassigned some folks. So, we will have a female officer in regalia on the stage, a male officer in plain clothes in the audience, and an officer in uniform. The football game really complicated things for Stotsenberg, so he really did us a big favor on this one. Alaina is going to follow -up on all the details and logistics. Kathie” 411. On 15th November 2009, Plaintiff attended the graduation ceremony in Duke Campus and while, Duke Administration calling students as per their order of names, and at that time, Alissandro Castillo made gestures that implying Plaintiff as a “trash” by tossing chewing gum wrap into a trash can in front of several classmates. 412. On 15th November 2009, When Duke Administration taking the class group photo, Sunil Balasaheb Patil was standing in behind row of the Plaintiff and repeatedly yelled at Plaintiff that “Vamsi has no value” along with hand movements. 413. On 15th November 2009, after the graduation ceremony, Plaintiff left the Duke Campus without attending graduation party hosted by Duke, because Plaintiff felt that defendants might create an awkward situation to Plaintiff. 414. On 8th January 2010, after Plaintiff commenced a civil action against Duke, Sheryle Dirks102 contacted William Boulding, John Gallagher, and Katharine Amato, and asked to start thinking about restricting Career Management services to Plaintiff and shortly thereafter night) along with past rumors/actions regarding Vamsi, lead people to be concerned about their safety. We do not feel that Vamsi is a threat to your class. Based on my conversations with Vamsi, he is planning to be at graduation. For precautionary measures, we will also have an increased security presence that day at the ceremony and reception. I've heard from a few students and have told them the same thing. I've also told them that the administration is well aware of Vamsi's behavior and the classes feelings regarding him. I don't want anyone to think we are doing nothing or not "hearing" them. Please feel free to direct students to me and/or John should you continue to hear from people. Let me know if you have additional questions. Looking forward to seeing you again in a few weeks! Alaina 102 Associate Dean for Career Management, Duke University Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 89 of 125
    • Page - 90 - of 125 Duke stopped Career Management services such as email notifications about exclusive job opportunities and providing coaching as to how to apply for jobs and write resumes. 415. By the end of November 2009, due to Defendant’s gang like behavior and conduct, Plaintiff suffered from disabling emotional or mental health condition of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), neurosis, chronic depression, insomnia, narcolepsy, chronic fatigue, increased irritability and mood swings, chronic worrying, and constant inner tension. 416. In addition, suffered from memory loss, difficulty concentrating, and reduced capacity for speech. 417. In addition suffered from restlessness, bad breath, sweaty hands and feet, inability to relax, and loss of muscle strength. 418. In addition suffered from repeated nightmares, preferring solitary lifestyle, lacking interest in social and sexual relationships. 419. In addition suffered from getting easily startled and irritated with normal noise levels. 420. Because, of suffering from memory loss, Plaintiff forget to remember and answer Duke Term exam questions that he just had learned during the semester. 421. Because, of suffering from memory loss, forget about his years of software programming language techniques, his important job activities and responsibilities that he had done for many years. 422. Because, of suffering from memory loss, unable to answer interviewer questions about his important job activities and responsibilities that he had done for many years during his new job interviews. 423. Because of Plaintiff preferring solitary lifestyle, lacking interest in social and sexual relationships, Plaintiff become uncomfortable to talk to his wife, relatives, colleagues, and neighbors and as result, in March 2010 Plaintiff’ wife get separated, file for divorce and obtained a divorce. 424. Because of Plaintiff suffering from posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), and neurosis, Plaintiff become secretive about his activities and become more vigilant and suspicious about people with whom he interacts. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 90 of 125
    • Page - 91 - of 125 425. Because of Plaintiff suffering from chronic depression, chronic fatigue, and chronic worrying, memory loss, difficulty concentrating, and reduced capacity for speech, it took more than a year after him completing Duke MBA program and be able to put few sentences in a coherent manner. 426. Because of memory loss and forget about his years of software programming language techniques, his important job activities and responsibilities that he had done for many years, Plaintiff could only be able to get a job at a substantially lower salary that that he use to make prior to joining his Duke MBA Program. 427. Because of Plaintiff preferring solitary lifestyle, lacking interest in social relationships and getting easily startled and irritated, Plaintiff couldn’t be able to maintain his normal relations with his co-workers and lost two jobs sequentially. 428. Because, Defendants along with Plaintiff’ classmates and Professors, publicized Plaintiff’ prescription medications, stigmatized and become prejudice, Plaintiff become fearful to take psychotherapy and take psychiatric drugs, because prescription medications records will be publicized by his adversaries, and Plaintiff will be discriminated, and prejudice by being seen as mentally ill by his classmates, and colleagues, Plaintiff started to adopt other remedies to take control of his mental health. 429. In February 2012, Court of Common Pleas compelled Plaintiff to undergo a mental health evaluation by a court appointed psychiatrist and subsequently court appointed psychiatrist opinioned that Plaintiff is suffering from severe emotional distress and impaired his cognitive abilities. Subsequently, Court of Common Pleas compelled Plaintiff to take his medications. 430. In July and August 2012, a private psychologist performed tests and opinioned that Plaintiff is suffering from PTSD, GAD and Psychosis. 431. In September 2012, Court of Common Pleas compelled Plaintiff to undergo a mental health evaluation by a court appointed psychiatrist and subsequently court appointed psychiatrist opinioned that Plaintiff is suffering from severe emotional distress and impaired his cognitive abilities. 432. Right before Plaintiff begins the process of making an application into an MBA program, in January 2008, Plaintiff sought a management consulting psychologist Stanton B. Felzer’, Ph.D Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 91 of 125
    • Page - 92 - of 125 professional services, to assist Plaintiff’ thinking about his career options that he must pursue in the short and long-term future. 433. Mr. Felzer conducted comprehensive psychological testing on Plaintiff and wrote his recommendation letter to Duke103 and stated that testing shows that Plaintiff possesses superior intelligence and his basic skills are consistent with that result. In addition Mr. Felzer stated that this was evident even recognizing language and cultural factors which affect test results. 434. In addition, Mr. Felzer stated that, from a personality perspective, Plaintiff is emotionally stable, positive and optimistic, capable of relating well to people and self confident. 435. In addition, Mr. Felzer stated that Plaintiff is ambitious, highly motivated to succeed, seeks perfection in his performance and sets a high standard of excellence for himself and for others with whom he interacts. 436. Plaintiff’ mental health drastically declined after Plaintiff enrolling into his MBA Program at Duke due to Defendant’s gang like intentional atrocious and inhumane behavior and conduct directed towards Plaintiff. 437. Defendant’ purposefully made depreciatory statements about Plaintiff to Duke Administration, Duke Professors and Plaintiff’ classmates over a prolonged period of 18 103 Even though I have known Mr. Vurimindi for only a few months I feel that I can give him a strong recommendation for his acceptance into The Fuqua School of Business, Executive MBA program. Mr. Vurimindi sought my professional services, as a management consulting psychologist, in helping him clarify his thinking about career options he might consider for both the short and long-term future. Comprehensive psychological testing was completed and then a series of feedback counseling sessions was held to discuss the results and recommendations. Testing shows that Mr. Vurimindi possesses superior intelligence and his basic skills are consistent with that result. This was evident even recognizing language and cultural factors which affect test results. From a personality perspective Mr. Vurimindi is emotionally stable, positive and optimistic, capable of relating well to people and self confident. He is ambitious, highly motivated to succeed, seeks perfection in his performance and sets a high standard of excellence for himself and for others with whom he interacts. He is highly entrepreneurial and not only talks about this desire but has demonstrated this when in India and also in his years in the United States. In discussing these results the two basic alternatives we considered were for Mr. Vurimindi to seek employment in a financially oriented or Real Estate Development Corporation which would allow him to grow or to pursue an MBA program. We agreed that the latter was the best course to follow and he was enthusiastic about his recommendation. I, therefore, strongly recommend Mr. Vurimindi for your MBA program. I am confident he can successfully complete such a program and will in his future career reflect positively upon your program. If there is any additional information I can give you feel free to call upon me. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 92 of 125
    • Page - 93 - of 125 months, with an intent to destroy Plaintiff’s credibility and reputation within and outside Duke Academic Community. 438. Defendant’ statements and words convey that Plaintiff lacks ability to carry-on his consulting work and/or business and prejudiced Plaintiff in his profession. 439. Defendant’ statements imputed Plaintiff’ ability to perform his business tasks and lacks integrity in conducting his business. 440. As a result of the Defendants’ covert and overt purposeful depreciatory statements directed towards Plaintiff over a prolonged period of 18 months, condo those transitory deprecatory statements turned into a Duke academic community memory and profoundly, permanently and irrevocably damaged Plaintiff’ reputation. 441. As a result of the Defendant’ purposeful depreciatory statements, Duke Professors didn’t recommend and/or guide Plaintiff towards any opportunity, which leads to an economic value to Plaintiff. 442. As a result of the Defendant’ purposeful depreciatory statements at the recruitment events, Plaintiff didn’t get any consulting work as advertized by the Duke. 443. As a result of the Defendant’ deliberate false and baseless allegation that Plaintiff carried gun in the campus and subsequently characterizing Plaintiff as workplace/school shooter, and subsequent Duke’ enquiry to Wyeth Pharmaceuticals, Plaintiff’ consulting assignment has been terminated by Wyeth Pharmaceuticals, eight months before the contract term. 444. As a result of the Defendant’ deliberate false and baseless allegation that Plaintiff carried gun in the campus and subsequently characterizing Plaintiff as workplace/school shooter and subsequent Duke’ enquiry to Wharton School of Business, Plaintiff couldn’t able to go back and complete the course. 445. As a result of the Defendant’ gang like intentional and purposeful depreciatory statements, Plaintiff didn’t get an access to Plaintiff’ classmates non Duke social networking groups in LinkedIn, and Google Groups. 446. As a result of the Defendant’ purposeful depreciatory statements, since the completion of his MBA program, Plaintiff didn’t any job lead or offer based on his MBA education from Duke. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 93 of 125
    • Page - 94 - of 125 447. As a result of the Defendant’ purposeful depreciatory statements, since the completion of his MBA program, Plaintiff didn’t any job lead or offer based on his MBA education from Duke. 448. As a result of Defendants’ purposeful depreciatory statements directed towards Plaintiff, blacken the reputation of Plaintiff in his statistical programming community and as a result, Plaintiff has to accept a remuneration much lower than that ordinarily paid to statistical programmers with similar experience that of Plaintiff; and in addition much lower than that Plaintiff used to get just before he get admitted into MBA at Duke. 449. As a result of Defendants’ purposeful depreciatory statements directed towards Plaintiff, blacken the reputation of Plaintiff and expose him to public hatred, contempt, ridicule, aversion and disgrace among the Duke Academic community. 450. In addition, Defendants’ purposeful depreciatory statements directed towards Plaintiff cause Plaintiff to be shunned and avoided by Duke Academic community. 451. In addition, Defendants’ purposeful depreciatory statements directed towards Plaintiff deprive Plaintiff of the benefit of public confidence. 452. As a result of Defendants’ purposeful depreciatory statements directed towards Plaintiff, and subsequent public hatred, contempt, ridicule, aversion and disgrace among the Duke Academic community, Plaintiff couldn’t able to derive any additional direct monetary benefit, or a benefit that leads to monetary benefit. In contrary, Plaintiff has to accept a remuneration much lower than that Plaintiff used to get just before he get admitted into MBA at Duke. 453. As a result, the Duke Tuition fee of approximately $110,000, travel and accommodation expenses of $20,000 and loss of income due to attending classes on working days of $130,000 in total $260,000 is complete loss to Plaintiff. 454. In an essence, Plaintiff incurred $260,000 obtain his MBA from Duke and after completing his MBA Plaintiff has to accept a remuneration much lower than that Plaintiff used to get just before he get admitted into MBA at Duke. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 94 of 125
    • Page - 95 - of 125 455. In addition in an essence, Plaintiff incurred $260,000 and eighteen months of his valuable time, to get exposed to the public hatred, contempt, ridicule, aversion and disgrace among the Duke Academic community. 456. In addition as a result of Defendants’ purposeful depreciatory statements, bizarre and outrageous conduct, Plaintiff has suffered actual damages. These damages include pain and suffering, a continuing permanent and ongoing cerebral energy deficit, diminished ability to learn fluently, long-term and progressive deficits in learning, memory, and cognitive behavior, medical bills and related costs of treatment, and lost work time and income. The long-term effects of his injuries continue to manifest themselves. (IV) FIRST CAUSE OF ACTION – LIBEL AGAINST BARNES BARTON, ROBERT BALL, ROBERT ROSS, DANIEL PASCHKE, PETER WALTON, NATHANIEL HAWKINS DANIEL PASCHKE, MOIRA RINGO, BROOKE BALCOM, AND SHANA KEATING: 457. Plaintiff incorporates herein by reference all preceding paragraphs 01 through 456 of this Complaint the same as if fully set forth hereinafter. 458. Defendant Robert Ross has a pattern of making baseless and concocted allegations against Plaintiff with Duke Professors and Duke Administration. 459. On 24th February 2009, afternoon, Defendants Shana Keating, Robert Ross and Robert Ball writes six pages of atrocious lies with hatred abhorrence and abomination against Plaintiff to Duke Administration as follows: i. We concern about Vamsi's punctuality, work ethic, quality of work, and moral character. ii. Vamsi was not a good team lead. This is not a judgment, but rather an observation. iii. Vamsi is inflexible and unwilling to compromise. If we do not proceed in the manner he desires, he complains or refuses to participate. iv. Vamsi is not a team player. v. Vamsi's contributions are not valuable. vi. We do not feel comfortable with the quality of his work in general. vii. We consider his contributions of little to no worth. viii. Very little of Vamsi's work (if any) has ever been used in the final versions of our assignments. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 95 of 125
    • Page - 96 - of 125 ix. Vamsi often does not provide analysis and rarely provides insightful analysis. x. We are concerned about Vamsi's moral character. xi. However, Vamsi has openly discussed the "hanky panky" and "bribing city hall" and the "goons" that are all part of his daily business conduct. xii. We have searched for Vamsi's value-add with no success. xiii. We consider him a negative contribution to the team. 460. On 24th February 2009, late evening, Defendant Robert Ross writes an email to Defendant Barnes Barton and Harold Hong and John Gallagher as follows: i. “This evening on a team call, one of my teammate, Vamsi Vurimindi, discussed actions that may have been in violation of the Honor Code. During our discussion about the National Cranberry Case, he said something like: "This case is a very popular case. It's not new. A lot of schools have used it. When I goggled the case ...” ii. “No one on the call responded to his comment and after about 15 seconds of silence one of us (maybe me) redirected the conversation. After the case discussion was complete, with all of my team members still on the call, I told this person that I was not comfortable with his actions” iii. “I noted that I had not recently read the letter of the Honor Code, but was certain that his actions were in violation of the spirit of the Honor Code” iv. “Another team member clarified that seeking outside information for cases is not allowed and should not be done going forward” v. “The offending team member stated that he did not have violating the Honor Code on his mind when he was looking for information about the case” vi. “He continued on to say that this is an easy case and it’s just not that complicated. (I don't know what the value of that last statement was) In and of itself, my team member's action was at a minimum irresponsible.” vii. “However, this is not the first time that he has skirted this moral line.” viii. “During last term he put me in a compromising situation with one of our papers by adding content to a draft of our paper without having cited the source. The content was Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 96 of 125
    • Page - 97 - of 125 not relevant to the direction of our paper, and I was concerned with the authorship of the writing so I simply deleted his contribution and moved on” ix. “Another team member confronted him about this issue and explained that it could have lead to plagiarism”. “He defended his actions and stated that he wasn't trying to plagiarize”. x. “I'm not sure if these actions meet the threshold of an investigation, but given tonight's comments, I feel that it is necessary that I bring this forward” xi. “Also, my team has been in contact with Mark Brown and will be meeting with him telephonically over the next week and in person the next time we are on campus. The central reason for meeting is this team member's performance, actions, and "moral character." xii. “While I am willing to work without this teammate, he has already wasted enough of my time that I am fearful of a combustible situation that would be a further drag on my and the rest of my team's time” 461. On 04th March 2009, Defendant Robert Ross writes an email to Duke Administration and writes as, “To be honest with you, his pattern has made me (and I can specifically quote another teammate on this) wonder what else he has cheated?” 462. On 16th March 2009, Defendant Robert Ball writes an email to Duke Administration and writes as, “My team has not used a single contribution from Vamsi on any of our team submittals. It has become clear that Vamsi simply "googles" information related to the cases and emails it to the team. There is no analysis and, in my opinion, very little, if any, of the information he provides is beneficial to answering the question. 463. In addition Defendant Robert Ball writes an email to Duke Administration and writes as, “I am very leery of any information that Vamsi submits because the information that he provides is very inconsistent and he does not cite his sources. I feel uncomfortable with Vamsi's work” 464. On 29th April 2009, Defendant Robert Ross wrote an email to Professor Kira Fabrizio and John Gallagher and characterized Plaintiff as a “serial plagiarizer” and he is very much Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 97 of 125
    • Page - 98 - of 125 concerned about Plaintiff that he could see Plaintiff searching the Internet for answers, using his textbooks, or even having someone help him with the exams. 465. Defendant Moira Ringo, grudgingly telling across Duke Academic Community about Plaintiff lacks academic integrity and had a history of academic dishonesty; and indulged in adultery. 466. On 08th June 2009, immediately after Plaintiff contacted Lynn Taylor enquiring the source of her scandalous gossip about Plaintiff to file harassment complaint with Duke Administration, Defendant Moira Ringo write an email to Duke Administration that, Defendant Peter Walton told her that Plaintiff showed a pistol to Defendant Peter Walton in Duke Campus. 467. In addition, Defendant Moira Ringo in her email to Duke Administration, characterized Plaintiff fits the profile of a Workplace/School Shooter. 468. The characterization of Plaintiff as a “Workplace/School Shooter” is libelous on its face. This characterization clearly exposes Plaintiff to hatred, contempt, ridicule and such characterization is obloquy to Plaintiff and created questions in minds of people inside and outside Duke Academic community. 469. On 17th June 2009, Defendant Peter Walton writes an email to Duke Administration as follows: i. “Vamsi did not express any specific lack of concern or disdain with US law, but rather, ignorance for its differing from Indian law”. ii. “I would also like to note that since administrative action was taken previously, I have noticed a significant change in his behavior. He is much more passive and inquisitive than previously, when he was brash and confrontational” iii. “When I asked him about general knowledge firearm owners should know, I was not convinced he understood all the concepts” iv. “When I asked him if he carried with him and had a concealed-carry permit he replied he did carry it but did not have the permit.” v. “He was wearing a long, khaki trench coat and gestured like he was carrying it at that moment. What I saw appeared to be a holstered pistol on his hip, but I cannot be certain and never saw it again.” Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 98 of 125
    • Page - 99 - of 125 470. On 31st July 2009, Defendant Nathaniel Hawkins write an email to Duke Administration and characterized Plaintiff as a person afflicted with "paranoid psychosis" and supported his accusatory style characterization by using his father’ PhD in Psychology and as his professional opinion. 471. In addition, Defendant Nathaniel Hawkins in his email to Duke Administration stated as follows: i. “My apologies for bringing to your attention yet another issue for the surely infamous WEMBA '09 class”. ii. “I think it might be pertinent for someone on your staff with a psychology background to keep an eye on Vamsi's posts and behavior until we finish with term 5, and finally graduate out of your hair”. iii. “Lately he has posted two somewhat disturbing threads, among many others that simply don't make sense. The "Jack Handey" thread and "Privacy at The R. David Thomas Center" thread in the Student Lounge, are quite telling.” iv. “I've forwarded and discussed some of this behavior with my father, who holds a PhD in Psychology. He suggested that these posts are suggestive of a possible "paranoid psycosis" affliction” v. “He opted to have me write you rather that claim to be able to diagnose over the internet, but if either of you would like to speak with him on the matter, he is more than accommodating”. vi. “I don't think anything can actually be "done" about this, but I think we (the class) would feel better if you were keeping an eye on it.” vii. “Safety is my only concern”. viii. “I've discussed some of this with classmates in order to curb any more posts to the Platform directed at Vamsi. Anything that he might construe as antagonizing. I think it has worked.” ix. “My only goal in this matter is to complete 5 more weekends and a graduation ceremony safely, and my conscience would not rest had I not alerted you all while I still had the chance to act preventatively.” Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 99 of 125
    • Page - 100 - of 125 x. “I have considered letting this slide, but after discussions with about half of a dozen of my most trusted colleagues, we have all agreed that it might be time to drop you a note.” xi. “I am copying a few lines below from my father and a line on Thought Disorders that I think pertains”: a. “Probably an early paranoid psychotic. They can be very dangerous - examples include Kool-Aid Jim Jones and David Koresh; They are usually pretty odd and alienated until the age of 40 or so and then flip into complete psychosis when they realize the nature of the plot against them” b. “Getting awfully disorganized stay away from him and let others get high on his radar”. c. “This guy is getting more and more decompensated” d. “He's feeling some pressure and he's blaming the school and his classmates” e. “’Paranoid illumination’ has occurred or is about to” f. “Tell everybody to be careful and try to disappear off his scope. If you need me to send a note to the administration let me know” xii. I found this on wiki: From the wiki article on paranoid psychosis http://en.wikipedia.org/ wiki/Psychosis Thought disorder: Thought disorder describes an underlying disturbance to conscious thought and is classified largely by its effects on speech and writing. Affected persons show loosening of associations, that is, a disconnection and disorganization of the semantic content of speech and writing. In the severe form speech becomes incomprehensible and it is known as "word-salad". 472. As soon, Defendant Nathaniel Hawkins writes an email, on 07th August 2009, Duke Administration writes an email to Wharton School of Business and enquires about Plaintiff’ record during his time at Wharton School of Business. 473. In response to Duke Administration enquiry, Wharton School of Business responded back and informed Duke Administration as, “In checking Vamsidhar's record, it doesn't appear that there were any problems concerning him. We didn't anything good or bad from the faculty or his classmates” Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 100 of 125
    • Page - 101 - of 125 474. On 09th August 2009, Defendant Barnes Barton writes an email to Duke Administration and stated as follows: i. “I have had several extended discussions in the last few weeks concerning the Honor Code violation. As I discussed the situation, several classmates expressed serious concern that Vamsi Vurimindi was the student convicted” ii. Several classmates were worried that if Vamsi was the person, he might do something violent and aggressive. iii. Several classmates confirmed several incidents that have occurred during the program, to include unprovoked aggression against no fewer than 5 people in our class. iv. Vamsi’ pattern of aggressive and bizarre behavior has a substantial group in our class anxious, to say the least. v. Several students in our class are strongly considering withdrawing from some of the graduation events due to their concern over Vamsi's erratic behavior. vi. As a judicial representative of the class, and having several of my classmates placing trust in me to follow up with the administration, I feel that it is important to pass along these concerns to you directly. vii. The multiple issues Vamsi has had in participating and supporting other class members has caused them, and me, to question why he has not been visibly disciplined. viii. While I am sure that events are occurring of which we are unaware, there are a number of our class that feel as if their safety is not being taken seriously due to the opacity of any disciplinary actions taken so far. ix. The academic environment at Fuqua is precious to all of us, and we hold the administration accountable to protect that environment on behalf of the best interests of the class at large. 475. Immediately, after Defendant Barnes Barton blackmailed Duke Administration, on 10th August 2009, Defendant Shana Keating in Duke’ online portal, with a subject heading “Random Question about Stalkers” published “Say you (a woman, single, living alone) had a party with a bonfire at your house. A certain invitee doesn't attend and then posts this Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 101 of 125
    • Page - 102 - of 125 message somewhere publicly the next week. Read ALL OF IT - especially the last four lines. Would you, or would you not, consider issuing a restraining order?” 1) Every breath you take 2) And every move you make 3) And every word you say 4) And every claim you stake 5) And every step you take 6) And every game you play 7) And every smile you fake 8) And every single day 9) III be watching you 10) I always enjoy bonfire 11) But not at the expense of others. 12) III be watching you 13) III be watching you 476. In fact and Duke’ Academic Community including all Plaintiff’ classmates, had full knowledge that Plaintiff re-published in Duke’ online portal the above said “Stings” lyrics in response to Jason Sandburg taking a potshot at Plaintiff. 477. On 10th August 2009, immediately after Defendant Shana Keating published above said statements, Defendant Brook Balcom, in response to Defendant Shana Keating’ publication under subject heading “Random Question about Stalkers” published “The whole experience and class would be better off without him. He is absolutely scary!!! Why the administration can't do something about him is crazy to me.” 478. Immediately, as soon Defendants Shana Keating and Brook Balcom published the above said statements, Duke Administration contacted both Defendants Shana Keating and Brook Balcom and asked them to if they have any concerns, they can contact Duke Administration. 479. On 11th October 2009, Defendant Anna Gonowon writes an email to Duke Administration, saying it was “amusing” to her, when Plaintiff making an appeal to stop harassing him, and further said that, “Vamsi presents himself as an unstable and unsettling person whenever one speaks to him. I am uncomfortable and feel unsafe around him”. “What if he "becomes wild" (as he stated in his most recent post) and does something that everyone could regret?” 480. In addition, Defendant Anna Gonowon writes in her email to Duke Administration that, “I just wanted to let you know that every time Vamsi speaks out loud or posts a message makes at least one person (me) feel quite uneasy and, frankly, as if something bad could Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 102 of 125
    • Page - 103 - of 125 happen. If there was a plainclothes policeman there, I appreciate that the Administration had one present, and I do ask that there continue to be plainclothes policemen at Graduation watching him.” 481. In addition, Defendant Anna Gonowon writes in her email to Duke Administration that, “I do ask that you do not share this with my classmates, especially Vamsi. I don't want to be on his "unfavored" list.” 482. As alleged and accused by the Defendants Shana Keating, Robert Ball, Robert Ross, Plaintiff didn’t searched Google for answers to course work. 483. As against to the accusations made by Defendants Shana Keating, Robert Ball, Robert Ross: i. Plaintiff is ambitious, highly motivated to succeed, seeks perfection in his performance and sets a high standard of excellence for himself and for others with whom he interacts. ii. Plaintiff is punctual, maintained high work ethics, delivered high quality of work, and maintained very high level of integrity, courage, fortitude, honesty, and loyalty in his life. iii. Plaintiff led Defendants Shana Keating, Robert Ball, and Robert Ross in a highly structured manner. iv. Plaintiff was flexible and made many compromises with Defendants Shana Keating, Robert Ball, and Robert Ross. v. Plaintiff was a team player. vi. Plaintiff worked hard and made quality contribution, but Defendants Shana Keating, Robert Ball, and Robert Ross, discard Plaintiff’ contributions systematically. vii. Plaintiff didn’t discussed with anyone that his daily business conduct as "hanky panky", "bribing city hall" and "goons are part of his business”. 484. As against to the accusations made by Defendants Robert Ross: i. Plaintiff didn’t say to Defendant Robert Ross that he searched Google. But, Plaintiff said that the team assignment casework is simple and straight forward and been administered by several business schools, to break up some of the tension among the team members with this encouragement. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 103 of 125
    • Page - 104 - of 125 ii. Plaintiff never attempted to obtain answers against Duke Honor Code. iii. Defendant Robert Ross himself agreed that Plaintiff added content to a draft paper. What he conveniently ignored is that course work specifically allowed internet searches and all Defendants Shana Keating, Robert Ball, and Robert Ross searched internet and added content and supplied the sources during the finalization of the paper. In addition, Defendant Robert Ross himself agreed that the content was not relevant to the direction of the paper, and he simply deleted Plaintiff’ contribution and moved on. iv. Defendant Shana Keating accused Plaintiff plagiarized and Plaintiff defended his actions, because that course work allows internet searches. v. Plaintiff and Defendants Shana Keating, Robert Ball, and Robert Ross met with Mark Brown to reach an agreement as to how a Duke learning team should function and not based on the Plaintiff’ performance, actions, and "moral character." If Plaintiff would have known that Defendants Shana Keating, Robert Ball, and Robert Ross write six pages of atrocious lies, Plaintiff would have attended that meeting with his attorney or filed his civil action immediately. vi. Defendants Shana Keating, Robert Ball, and Robert Ross made witch-hunt by harassing Plaintiff, simply because of Plaintiff’ past political affiliations and personal beliefs. Defendant Robert Ross saying to Duke Administration as, “To be honest with you, his pattern has made me (and I can specifically quote another teammate on this) wonder what else he has cheated?” clearly shows how much Defendants Shana Keating, Robert Ball, Robert Ross obsessive to lynch Plaintiff. 485. As against to the accusations made by Defendant Moira Ringo: i. Plaintiff rigorously maintained his academic integrity. ii. Plaintiff adhered firmly and devotedly to his wife and engaged in sex only with his wife. iii. Plaintiff didn’t had ‘run-ins’ with Gregory Valentine and/or any of his classmates. All outside of the class communications regarding Plaintiff’ enquiry about Defendants harassment made through email communication, except, with Defendant Brook Balcom. iv. Plaintiff never interacted with his classmates in combative mode or mood, but made a very polite enquiry by asking straight answers, without mincing words. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 104 of 125
    • Page - 105 - of 125 v. Plaintiff never attempted to gain power over his classmates in any way or in any manner. vi. Plaintiff, during his time at Duke didn’t carry a gun either inside the Duke Campus or outside the Duke Campus. After, Plaintiff begins to enquire Duke Administration the process to file a harassment complaint, and immediately after Plaintiff contacted Lynn Taylor enquiring the source of her scandalous gossip, Defendant Moira Ringo purposefully bring-back the dismissed allegations with a new twist, in retaliation to the Plaintiff’ attempt to gather evidence for harassment. vii. Plaintiff isn’t a “Workplace/School Shooter”, but Defendant Moira Ringo made a deliberate effort to expose Plaintiff to public hatred by mischaracterizing Plaintiff. 486. As against to the accusations made by Defendant Peter Walton: i. Plaintiff didn’t express his ignorance or specific lack of concern or disdains with US law or to Indian law or to as to how US law differing from India Law. ii. Plaintiff was never brash and confrontational with his classmates or defendants. iii. Plaintiff and Defendant Peter Walton didn’t have any conversation about the general knowledge that firearm owners should know. iv. Plaintiff and Defendant Peter Walton didn’t had any conversation about whether Plaintiff carrying a gun with a concealed-carry permit or without permit, because there isn’t a gun at all. v. Plaintiffs wear a long, khaki trench coat, but didn’t gesture like he was carrying a gun it at that moment. Just like anyone else, Plaintiff carried a mobile telephone in holster attached to his belt. 487. As against to the accusations made by Defendant Nathaniel Hawkins: i. Plaintiff didn’t suffer from affliction of "paranoid psychosis, but suffering from PTSD and GAD. ii. Plaintiff interacted with his classmates cordially and made gentle enquiries. It is true that Plaintiff’ posts during class discussions reflects his beliefs, conviction and culture; and nothing is out of ordinary. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 105 of 125
    • Page - 106 - of 125 iii. Plaintiff responded to Jason Sandburg under the heading “Jack Handey Deep Thoughts” saying that, “I'm attempting to end the airing of grievances thread with an unthought provoking recap of Jack Handey's Deep Thoughts”. Because, Jason Sundberg work for Accenture and had direct contacts with Plaintiff’ colleagues at Wyeth Pharmaceuticals and Plaintiff’ classmates made mockery about Plaintiff’ demotion; and Jason Sundberg made derogatory remarks about Plaintiff’ sexuality, Plaintiff was unhappy with Jason Sundberg. In addition Plaintiff was unhappy with Jason Sundberg when Plaintiff express his displeasure, Jason Sundberg attempted to shut-out by dubbing that Plaintiff is “airing his grievances” and to begin with he is one of the culprit in propagating lies about Plaintiff’ work life, Plaintiff responded to Jason Sundberg by saying that he can’t have fun at the expense of others. Basically, Plaintiff reprints Gordon Matthew Thomas Sumner CBE, known by his stage name ‘Sting’. iv. Plaintiff posted a message under the heading "Privacy at The R. David Thomas Center" after Gregory Valentine publically talked about his medications, as Plaintiff privacy is compromised at The R. David Thomas Center. v. Plaintiff never posed security and safety concern to anyone, but all the allegations against Plaintiff is motivated by personal grudge, animosity and disliking. vi. Defendant Nathaniel Hawkins along with other defendants and his half a dozen most trusted colleagues schemingly persuaded Duke to expel Plaintiff. In order to achieve their goal, used his father’ credentials as PhD in Psychology. vii. Plaintiff is no way related or connected or resemble in any form with Kool-Aid Jim Jones and David Koresh; this comparison made only to expose Plaintiff to public hatred. viii. Plaintiff is under tremendous pressure due to Defendants harassment and not only blaming Duke for failure to implementing anti-harassment policies, but also held accountable for failing to implement anti-harassment policies. ix. Plaintiff acknowledges that he isn’t a professional English writer or an orator, or a legally trained person to write persuasive argument in English. Nevertheless, Defendants understand all of Plaintiff’ posts and chooses to derive extreme negative inferences, Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 106 of 125
    • Page - 107 - of 125 even when there is nothing to construe in an extreme manner and complained to Duke to take visible action against Plaintiff. 488. As against to the accusations made by Defendant Barnes Barton: i. Plaintiff is neither aggressive nor violent; but filled with industrious and driven attitude. ii. Plaintiff never exhibited unprovoked aggression, but write polite and gentle emails to enquire the defendants as to why they are harassing Plaintiff. iii. Plaintiff never exhibited an aggressive and bizarre behavior, but writes polite and gentle emails to enquire the defendants as to why they are harassing Plaintiff. iv. Defendant Barnes Barton blackmailed Duke Administration to prevent Plaintiff from attending graduation event, by saying that several students in our class are strongly considering withdrawing from some of the graduation events due to their concern over Vamsi's erratic behavior. v. Defendant Barnes Barton by questioning Duke Administration, as to why Plaintiff hasn’t been visibly disciplined, is similar to synonyms “a thief calling a police a thief”. During Plaintiff’ time at Duke, defendants harassed Plaintiff using all available means and methods that is available at their disposal, and when Plaintiff simply asked the Defendants as to why they are harassing Plaintiff, Defendant Barnes Barton demanded for an visible action against Plaintiff in an accusatory style. vi. Defendant Barnes Barton understands that it is easy to get an action against Plaintiff in the name of safety and security rather than any other type of allegation, and Defendant Barnes Barton accusing Duke Administration by dubbing for not expelling Plaintiff as“opacity of disciplinary action against Plaintiff”. vii. Defendant Barnes Barton blackmailing Duke Administration to expel Plaintiff in the name of “best interests of the class at large”, or otherwise all of the defendants hold the administration accountable for failure to protect the academic environment. 489. As against to the accusations made by Defendant Shana Keating: i. Defendant Shana Keating is extrapolating a key word of ‘bonfire’ in Plaintiff’ posting to an unrelated event of a ‘bonfire’ in a term end party hosted by a student to which, Plaintiff, Defendant Shana Keating and Jason Sundberg didn’t attend. In fact, Plaintiff didn’t had a Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 107 of 125
    • Page - 108 - of 125 knowledge there was a term end ‘bonfire’ party was hosted by Jason Tan, until Plaintiff received discovery material from Duke. After the fact, it made Plaintiff to wonder what else Jason Tan did in Plaintiff’ back, other than hosting a ‘bonfire’ party and ridiculing Plaintiff. ii. Plaintiff didn’t ‘watched her’ and don’t have any interest to ‘watch her’. 490. As against to the accusations made by Brooke Balcom, Plaintiff never focused on her and never ‘crazy’ to her, expect Plaintiff gently asked her as to why she accused him “you are full of it”. 491. As against to the accusations made by Defendant Anna Gonowon: i. Plaintiff never posted anything remotely that could be construed that Plaintiff could do something violent. ii. Plaintiff never presents himself as an unstable and unsettling person whenever one speaks to him. In fact, Plaintiff never spoke with Anna Gonowon during his time at Duke. iii. Plaintiff didn’t state he “become wild”, except stating that, “I just want to let you know that I do have an option to stoop down to the same level and make you feel the same way that you wanted me to feel. However, I do not want to waste my energy on this non- productive stuff. I spend some energy to write this appeal, to let you know that your behavior is curtailing my fundamental civil rights and causing difficulties to my learning experience at Fuqua”. iv. None of the Plaintiff’ postings or his conversations with his classmates and defendants are threatening; v. Plaintiff didn’t present himself as a threat to anyone. vi. Defendant Anna Gonowon’ email to Duke Administration asking continues to deploy “plainclothes policemen at Graduation watching him” is a larger part of defendants’ concerted effort to expel Plaintiff from Duke. 492. Defendants written statements have damaged and will continue to damage Plaintiff’ career, business and reputation, including but not limited to Plaintiff’ reputation and business and career opportunities available through Duke network based on Plaintiff’ relationship with Duke, Duke’ Professors, and Plaintiff’ classmates. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 108 of 125
    • Page - 109 - of 125 493. Defendants written statements were made or caused to be made either with the knowledge that they were false or conscious disregard for the truth. 494. Defendants conduct, behavior, writings and other activities are directed towards Plaintiff, to make Plaintiff to leave Duke on his own or Duke expel Plaintiff. 495. Defendants conduct, behavior, writings and other activities are directed towards Plaintiff isn’t justifiable because their conduct, behavior, writings and other activities are directed to make Plaintiff to leave Duke on his own or Duke expel Plaintiff. 496. Defendants conduct, behavior, writings and other activities are directed towards Plaintiff aren’t privileged, because Defendants hatched a conspiracy against Plaintiff and wantonly filed false complaints against the Plaintiff, by disregarding the truth without justification. 497. Defendants abused Duke Policies and procedures to drive-out Plaintiff to leave Duke on his own or Duke expel Plaintiff. 498. In addition, after Plaintiff initiate a conversation with Duke Administration to file a formal harassment complaint, Defendants filed retaliatory preemptive false complaints with Duke Administration as a smoke-screen to cover-up their abusive and atrocious conduct towards Plaintiff. 499. In addition, all allegations and accusations attributing to Plaintiff’ behavior and/or conduct with the defendants or classmates are fabricated or over exaggerated by the defendants as larger part of their conspiracy and witch-hunting against Plaintiff to drive-out Plaintiff to leave Duke on his own or Duke expel Plaintiff. 500. Because of the Defendants written statements based on fabricated facts, Duke Professors treated Plaintiff markedly different than they treated other students at Duke, and Duke Administration subjected Plaintiff to a grueling, grinding and long drawn process of investigation and they by Duke Administration, furthered Defendants objective to expose Plaintiff to the public hatred. 501. Because of the Defendants written statements based on fabricated facts to trigger a grueling, grinding and long drawn process of Duke’ investigation, Plaintiffs’ learning process and learning ability was affected substantially. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 109 of 125
    • Page - 110 - of 125 502. As a proximate result of the above described Defendant’ false written statements, Plaintiff have suffered loss of employment, reputation, shame, mortification, and injury to his feelings, all to his damage in the total amount exceeding $250,000. Therefore this action is brought in this court, a total amount to be established by proof at trial. 503. Because, Defendant’ written statements are false and designed and geared to stigmatize the Plaintiff among Duke Academic Community, and to stigmatize and repel prospective and potential career and business opportunities available through Duke network; and Defendant’ false written statements was wanton, willful and in reckless disregard to the health and financial wellbeing of Plaintiff, punitive damages should be awarded against it in an amount to be determined at trial. 504. WHEREFORE, Plaintiff prays this Honorable Court for the entry of a judgment in Plaintiff’ favor and against Defendants Barns Barton, Robert Ball, Nathaniel Hawkins, Robert Ross, Peter Walton, Dan Paschke, Brooke Balcom, Moira Ringo, Shana Keating, and Anna Gonowon in the sum not less than $260,000 (Two hundred and sixty thousand dollars) damages exclusive of Compensatory damages according to proof; Punitive damages; Exemplary damages; Interest as allowed by law; Costs of suit; and Such other and further relief as this court may deem just and proper and brings this action to recover the same. (V) SECOND CAUSE OF ACTION –COMPLAINT FOR SLANDER AGAINST BARNES BARTON, ROBERT BALL, ROBERT ROSS, DANIEL PASCHKE, PETER WALTON, NATHANIEL HAWKINS DANIEL PASCHKE, MOIRA RINGO, BROOKE BALCOM, AND SHANA KEATING: 505. Plaintiff incorporates herein by reference all preceding paragraphs 01 through 456 of this Complaint the same as if fully set forth hereinafter. 506. As a result of Defendant Moira Ringo’ oral statements about Plaintiff lack academic integrity and had a history of academic dishonesty, Plaintiff’ classmates and Duke academic community understood that Plaintiff has a history of plagiarism. 507. Defendant Moira Ringo’ statements about Plaintiff degrade and disgraced Plaintiff and Plaintiff was subjected to public hatred among his classmates and Duke academic community. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 110 of 125
    • Page - 111 - of 125 508. As a result of Defendant Moira Ringo’ oral statements about Plaintiff indulged in adultery, Plaintiff’ classmates and Duke academic community understood that Plaintiff had extramarital affairs and statements degrade and disgraced Plaintiff and Plaintiff was subjected to public hatred among his classmates and Duke academic community. 509. Defendant Brook Balcom’ oral statements about Plaintiff “you are full off it” expression directed towards Plaintiff in front of Plaintiff’ classmates, understand that Plaintiff is lying. Even though, Plaintiff’ classmates don’t understand what is that Plaintiff is lying about, it definitely showed a red flag to Plaintiff’ classmates that Plaintiff as a liar and affected Plaintiff’ credibility among his classmates. 510. Defendant Brook Balcom’ oral statements to Defendants Nathaniel Hawkins, Daniel Paschke, Plaintiff’ class representatives, and to John Gallagher that “On some level I am concerned that Vamsi was an angry and unhappy person who had now focused on me” easily understood that Plaintiff as a married man, is sexually attracted towards Defendant Brook Balcom. 511. Defendant Shana Keating, Robert Ross and Robert Ball statements about Plaintiff had in the past murdered or attempted to murder by shooting and or crashing his car to Mark Brown, lead Mark Brown carry forward those statement to Duke Administration and subsequently Duke Administration shadowed and snooped police around Plaintiff. And such police snooping and shadowing Plaintiff, lead Plaintiff’ classmates to believe that Plaintiff did something some horrible. 512. Simultaneously, Defendants Robert Ross, Robert Ball and Shana Keating intensified their malign and smear campaign against by fabricating fictitious stories which directly affect Plaintiff’ reputation by saying that Plaintiff’ daily business conduct is "hanky panky" implying that Plaintiff’ business conduct is dubious and suspicious. 513. In addition, Defendants Robert Ross, Robert Ball and Shana Keating malign and smeared Plaintiff’ reputation by fabricating fictitious stories by saying that Plaintiff’ daily business conduct is "bribing city hall" implying that Plaintiff engaged in corrupt business practice. 514. In addition, Defendants Robert Ross, Robert Ball and Shana Keating malign and smeared Plaintiff’ reputation by fabricating fictitious stories that Plaintiff’ daily business practice Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 111 of 125
    • Page - 112 - of 125 involve with employing “goons” implying that Plaintiff engaged goons in his daily business conduct 515. Defendant Nathaniel Hawkins oral statements to his trusted half a dozen classmates about Plaintiff’ mental health that Plaintiff is suffering from "paranoid psychosis" by telling that his father who holds a PhD in Psychology confirmed that Plaintiff is suffering "paranoid psychosis", half a dozen classmates believed that Plaintiff is suffering severe mental health condition and subsequently stigmatized and become prejudice against Plaintiff. 516. Defendant Barnes Barton as a judicial representative of the class having “several extended discussions” about Plaintiff with several classmates about the multiple honor code violations filed by his classmates against Plaintiff and those several classmates questioning why Plaintiff hasn’t been visibly disciplined, means first several classmates know that Defendant Barnes Barton investigated honor code violations against Plaintiff. 517. Being a judicial representative, Defendant Barnes Barton first and foremost duty is to protect the privacy of the student in question until a violation moves forward before to judicial committee. 518. Nevertheless, Defendant Barnes Barton himself discussed with several students about the multiple honor code violations against Plaintiff and agreed with several students that Plaintiff hasn’t been visibly disciplined by Duke, means that Defendant Barnes Barton told to those several students that Plaintiff violated Duke Honor Code. 519. Defendant Peter Walton oral statements that Plaintiff carrying a gun to his classmates and Duke Administration subjected Plaintiff to public hatred among his classmates and Duke academic community. 520. Defendants oral statements as explained above have damaged and will continue to damage Plaintiff’ career, business and reputation, including but not limited to Plaintiff’ reputation and business and career opportunities available through Duke network based on Plaintiff’ relationship with Duke, Duke’ Professors, and Plaintiff’ classmates. 521. Defendants oral statements were made or caused to be made either with the knowledge that they were false or conscious disregard for the truth. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 112 of 125
    • Page - 113 - of 125 522. Defendants conduct, behavior, oral statements and other activities are directed towards Plaintiff, to make Plaintiff to leave Duke on his own or Duke expel Plaintiff. 523. Defendants conduct, behavior, oral statements and other activities are directed towards Plaintiff isn’t justifiable because their conduct, behavior, writings and other activities are directed to make Plaintiff to leave Duke on his own or Duke expel Plaintiff. 524. Defendants conduct, behavior, oral statements and other activities are directed towards Plaintiff aren’t privileged, because Defendants hatched a conspiracy against Plaintiff and wantonly filed false complaints against the Plaintiff, by disregarding the truth without justification. 525. Defendants abused Duke Policies and procedures to drive-out Plaintiff to leave Duke on his own or Duke expel Plaintiff. 526. In addition, after Plaintiff initiate a conversation with Duke Administration to file a formal harassment complaint, Defendants filed retaliatory preemptive false complaints with Duke Administration as a smoke-screen to cover-up their abusive and atrocious conduct towards Plaintiff. 527. In addition, all allegations and accusations attributing to Plaintiff’ behavior and/or conduct with the defendants or classmates are fabricated or over exaggerated by the defendants as larger part of their conspiracy and witch-hunting against Plaintiff to drive-out Plaintiff to leave Duke on his own or Duke expel Plaintiff. 528. Because of the Defendants oral statements based on fabricated facts, Duke Professors treated Plaintiff markedly different than they treated other students at Duke, and Duke Administration subjected Plaintiff to a grueling, grinding and long drawn process of investigation and they by Duke Administration, furthered Defendants objective to expose Plaintiff to the public hatred. 529. Because of the Defendants oral statements based on fabricated facts to trigger a grueling, grinding and long drawn process of Duke’ investigation, Plaintiffs’ learning process and learning ability was affected substantially. 530. As a proximate result of the above described Defendant’ false oral statements, Plaintiff have suffered loss of employment, reputation, shame, mortification, and injury to his feelings, all Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 113 of 125
    • Page - 114 - of 125 to his damage in the total amount exceeding $250,000. Therefore this action is brought in this court, a total amount to be established by proof at trial. 531. Because, Defendant’ oral statements are false and designed and geared to stigmatize the Plaintiff among Duke Academic Community, and to stigmatize and repel prospective and potential career and business opportunities available through Duke network; and Defendant’ false written statements was wanton, willful and in reckless disregard to the health and financial wellbeing of Plaintiff, punitive damages should be awarded against it in an amount to be determined at trial. 532. WHEREFORE, Plaintiff prays this Honorable Court for the entry of a judgment in Plaintiff’ favor and against Defendants Barns Barton, Robert Ball, Nathaniel Hawkins, Robert Ross, Peter Walton, Dan Paschke, Brooke Balcom, Moira Ringo, Shana Keating, and Anna Gonowon in the sum not less than $260,000 (Two hundred and sixty thousand dollars) damages exclusive of Compensatory damages according to proof; Punitive damages; Exemplary damages; Interest as allowed by law; Costs of suit; and Such other and further relief as this court may deem just and proper and brings this action to recover the same. (VI) THIRD CAUSE OF ACTION – COMPLAINT FOR CIVIL CONSPIRACY AGAINST BARNES BARTON, ROBERT BALL, ROBERT ROSS, DANIEL PASCHKE, PETER WALTON, NATHANIEL HAWKINS DANIEL PASCHKE, MOIRA RINGO, BROOKE BALCOM, AND SHANA KEATING: 533. Plaintiff incorporates herein by reference all preceding paragraphs 01 through 456 of this Complaint the same as if fully set forth hereinafter. 534. Defendants oral and written statements to Duke Administration, Duke Professors and Classmates and the chronology of the events, show that Defendants Barns Barton, Robert Ball, Nathaniel Hawkins, Robert Ross, Peter Walton, Dan Paschke, Brooke Balcom, Moira Ringo, Shana Keating, and Anna Gonowon, and each of them, entered into an agreement under which said defendants, acting in concert, agreed to willfully or knowingly acted together with a common purpose to drive-out Plaintiff to leave Duke on his own or Duke expel Plaintiff. 535. The acts of Defendants, and each of them, were in furtherance of a conspiracy to drive-out Plaintiff to leave Duke on his own or Duke expel Plaintiff for their for self aggrandizement. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 114 of 125
    • Page - 115 - of 125 536. Defendants at all times did the acts and things herein alleged pursuant to, and in furtherance of, the conspiracy and agreement alleged above. 537. In order to drive-out Plaintiff to leave Duke on his own or Duke expel Plaintiff, Defendants publish defamatory statements; and gather Plaintiff’ private facts and make it public, such that Plaintiff must think, that in order to maintain his existing reputation, Plaintiff must quit Duke on his own. 538. Because, Plaintiff didn’t quit Duke on his own, Defendants adopted to file false complaints against Plaintiff to implicate in criminal complaints to compel Duke to expel Plaintiff or drive- out Plaintiff to leave Duke on his own. 539. After, Plaintiff didn’t leave Duke on his own, Defendants published several depreciatory statements about Plaintiff’ mental health, on top of the already published depreciatory statements that Plaintiff is aggressive and violent and compelled Duke to seriously consider to expel Plaintiff. 540. By the reason of civil conspiracy to make Plaintiff to leave Duke on his own or Duke expel Plaintiff, Defendants Barns Barton, Robert Ball, Nathaniel Hawkins, Robert Ross, Peter Walton, Dan Paschke, Brooke Balcom, Moira Ringo, Shana Keating, and Anna Gonowon, Plaintiff has suffered loss of his employment, loss of income, loss of his reputation, shame, mortification, and injury to his feelings. The actual damage in the total amount exceeding of $250,000. 541. Because, Defendants Barns Barton, Robert Ball, Nathaniel Hawkins, Robert Ross, Peter Walton, Dan Paschke, Brooke Balcom, Moira Ringo, Shana Keating, and Anna Gonowon civil conspiracy was wanton, willful and in reckless disregard for the safety and financial wellbeing of the Plaintiff, punitive damages should be awarded against it in an amount to be determined at trial. 542. WHEREFORE, Plaintiff prays this Honorable Court for the entry of a judgment in Plaintiff’ favor and against Defendants Barns Barton, Robert Ball, Nathaniel Hawkins, Robert Ross, Peter Walton, Dan Paschke, Brooke Balcom, Moira Ringo, Shana Keating, and Anna Gonowon in the sum not less than $260,000 (Two hundred and sixty thousand dollars) damages exclusive of Compensatory damages according to proof; Punitive damages; Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 115 of 125
    • Page - 116 - of 125 Exemplary damages; Interest as allowed by law; Costs of suit; and Such other and further relief as this court may deem just and proper and brings this action to recover the same. (VII) FOURTH CAUSE OF ACTION – INTENTIONAL INFLICTION OF EMOTIONAL DISTRESS AGAINST BARNES BARTON, ROBERT BALL, ROBERT ROSS, DANIEL PASCHKE, PETER WALTON, NATHANIEL HAWKINS DANIEL PASCHKE, MOIRA RINGO, BROOKE BALCOM, AND SHANA KEATING: 543. Plaintiff incorporates herein by reference all preceding paragraphs 01 through 456 of this Complaint the same as if fully set forth hereinafter. 544. Defendant’ knew that Plaintiff is sensitive and susceptible to the psychological manipulation by throwing Plaintiff on the defensive by using subtle, indirect, or implied threats. 545. Despite, Defendants knew that Plaintiff is sensitive and susceptible, Defendants Barns Barton, Robert Ball, Nathaniel Hawkins, Robert Ross, Peter Walton, Dan Paschke, Brooke Balcom, Moira Ringo, Shana Keating, and Anna Gonowon haunted and jog the Plaintiff’ memory about Defendant Moira Ringo’ statements about Plaintiff’ lacking academic integrity and had a history of academic dishonesty from the first-day of his MBA Program at Duke and continued until the day of the graduation. 546. Despite, Defendants knew that Plaintiff is sensitive and susceptible, as aforementioned Defendants Barns Barton, Robert Ball, Nathaniel Hawkins, Robert Ross, Peter Walton, Dan Paschke, Brooke Balcom, Moira Ringo, Shana Keating, and Anna Gonowon created a hostile learning environment through purposeful dissemination of depreciatory statements about Plaintiff throughout Duke Academic Community. 547. As aforementioned, Defendants Barns Barton, Robert Ball, Nathaniel Hawkins, Robert Ross, Peter Walton, Dan Paschke, Brooke Balcom, Moira Ringo, Shana Keating, and Anna Gonowon working with a prior understanding, in concert maul Plaintiff and create psychological terror upon Plaintiff, through their coercive, intimidating, and threatening verbal assaults; and by making false allegations and baseless accusations against Plaintiff; and obstructed Plaintiff from exercising and enjoying his fundamental right to pursue his education as follows: Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 116 of 125
    • Page - 117 - of 125 i. As aforementioned, initially Defendants begins with verbal assaults to intimidate and by throwing Plaintiff on the defensive through making subtle, indirect, or implied threats to compel Plaintiff to drop-out on his own from Duke. ii. As aforementioned, when Plaintiff didn’t drop-out on his own from Duke, Defendants persuade Professor Jill Stowe to target Plaintiff through methods and mechanisms available by Duke as a Professor, throwing Plaintiff on the defensive by using subtle, indirect, or implied threats the compel Plaintiff to drop-out on his own from Duke. iii. As aforementioned, when Plaintiff didn’t drop-out on his own from Duke, then Professor Jill Stowe, by incorrectly evaluating Plaintiff’ answer and failed Plaintiff, despite Duke Policy don’t require to do so, to involuntarily drop-out Plaintiff from Duke. iv. As aforementioned, Plaintiff appealed, without getting into reviewing whether Professor Jill Stowe to purposefully filter-out from Duke awarded failing grade or not, and foreclosing an opportunity to find the truth, by simply changing Plaintiff’ letter grade from fail to low pass. v. As aforementioned, while, Plaintiff’ waiting for a decision on his appeal, Duke withheld all study material from Plaintiff. vi. Since the time Professor Jill Stowe purposefully filter-out Plaintiff and to the time changing Plaintiff’ letter grade and Duke allowed Plaintiff to attend classes for his next term, Plaintiff was severely distressed and spend many nights without sleep. vii. As aforementioned, Professor Jill Stowe purposefully leaked Plaintiff’ failing grade prior to informing Plaintiff about his own grade in violation to FERPA to expose Plaintiff to shame and mortification. viii. As aforementioned, Defendants told to Plaintiff on the last day of Professor Jill Stowe’ course, this is your last trip to Duke by throwing Plaintiff on the defensive by using subtle, indirect, or implied threats. ix. As aforementioned, Since the end of Professor Jill Stowe’ course and until end of his MBA program, on the last day of every term, this is your last trip to Duke by throwing Plaintiff on the defensive by using subtle, indirect, or implied threats, implying that, implying that Professor is going to award a failing grade to Plaintiff. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 117 of 125
    • Page - 118 - of 125 x. As aforementioned while, Plaintiff was waiting to hear his official scores, Plaintiff was distressed and spends sleepless nights until his Duke allowed Plaintiff to attend classes in next term. xi. As aforementioned, after having been failed by Professor Jill Stowe, Plaintiff begins to actively participate in classroom discussion to be visible to professors. But, Defendants interjected and didn’t give an opportunity to participate in class discussions or signaled professors not to allow Plaintiff to participate in class discussions. xii. As aforementioned, when Plaintiff become active by posting his questions in the Duke online class discussion portal, Defendants started to accuse Plaintiff has plagiarized his postings, without any basis. xiii. As aforementioned, when Plaintiff ignored, Defendants begins to shut-out Plaintiff during his meetings with the Duke’ learning team members (Defendants Shana Keating, Robert Ross and Robert Ball). xiv. As aforementioned, when Plaintiff didn’t drop-out on his own from Duke, Defendants Shana Keating, Robert Ross and Robert Ball begins to discard Plaintiff’ contributions towards the class team projects. xv. As aforementioned, when Plaintiff didn’t drop-out on his own from Duke, Defendants Shana Keating, Robert Ross and Robert Ball begins to directly accuse Plaintiff has plagiarized his class work. xvi. As aforementioned, Defendants Shana Keating, Robert Ross and Robert Ball’ baseless accusations distressed Plaintiff. xvii. As aforementioned when Duke Administration failed to implement Duke’ Anti-harassment policies and create congenial learning environment at Duke for Plaintiff, and Plaintiff enquired as to why Defendants are harassing Plaintiff, Defendants Brooke Balcom, Daniel Bennion, John Cooper, Daniel Paschke, Robert Ross, Robert Ball, Nathaniel Hawkins, Peter Walton, Moira Ringo Shana Keating and Anna Gonowon unveiled a fabricated sensational story against Plaintiff, that Plaintiff showed a gun to Defendant Peter Walton in the Duke campu to get an immediate attention from Duke Administration and to compel Duke Administration to expel Plaintiff from Duke. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 118 of 125
    • Page - 119 - of 125 xviii. In addition, after the fact, it is clear that Defendants started a online discussions about guns and when Plaintiff didn’t participate in the online discussion, Defendant Peter Walton purposefully approached Plaintiff and talked about guns and based on those conversations, Defendant Peter Walton fabricate a story that Plaintiff showed him a gun on Duke Campus. xix. In addition to the fabricate a story that Plaintiff showed a gun on Duke Campus, Defendants systematically fabricate a story that Plaintiff had ‘run-ins’ with several classmates; Plaintiff verbally assaulted many classmates; Plaintiff is brash and confrontational; Plaintiff is violent; Plaintiff is mentally unstable to compel Duke Administration to take visible and tangible action against Plaintiff. As a result, Duke filed a police complaint against Plaintiff and caused a grueling investigation. xx. While Defendants are harassing Plaintiff, Defendants Brooke Balcom, Daniel Bennion, John Cooper, Daniel Paschke, Robert Ross, Robert Ball, Nathaniel Hawkins, Peter Walton, Moira Ringo Shana Keating and Anna Gonowon hatched a conspiracy and compelling Duke Administration to take visible and tangible action against Plaintiff, as aforementioned, Defendants Shana Keating, Robert Ross and Robert Ball hatched another conspiracy and threatened to remove Plaintiff’ name from the team projects and thereby force the professor to awards failing grade to Plaintiff. xxi. As aforementioned, with Defendants Shana Keating, Robert Ross and Robert Ball’ threatening Plaintiff was distressed and spends many nights without sleep. xxii. As aforementioned, when Defendants Shana Keating, Robert Ross and Robert Ball threaten Plaintiff have him remove from team projects, Plaintiff was terrified with the Defendants threat, because, if Plaintiff name was removed from the team project is an automatic failing grade to Plaintiff. xxiii. As aforementioned, when despite the threats, when Plaintiff didn’t drop-out on his own from Duke, but was terrified with the Defendants threats, as narrated above Defendants begins to verbally assault Plaintiff by calling Plaintiff as “pimp”, “mother fucker”, “gay” , “illegal”, “low self esteemed person”, and “criminal”. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 119 of 125
    • Page - 120 - of 125 xxiv. As aforementioned, Defendants Shana Keating, Robert Ross and Robert Ball hatched another conspiracy to have Plaintiff completely removed from Duke learning team and prepared six pages of atrocious lies against Plaintiff. xxv. As aforementioned when Plaintiff explained his position with facts, Defendants Shana Keating, Robert Ross and Robert Ball filed an honor code violation against Plaintiff googled for answers. xxvi. As aforementioned while, Plaintiff is awaiting Duke to adjudicate honor code violations, Plaintiff suffered from severe distress for not knowing why these defendants are persecuting Plaintiff. xxvii. As aforementioned while, Plaintiff awaits Duke to adjudicate honor code violations, Defendants Shana Keating, Robert Ross and Robert Ball discarded all of his contributions from other courses by dubbing, that Plaintiff contributions of “no value” and told to other classmates Plaintiff didn’t contribute anything of value and by throwing Plaintiff on the defensive by using subtle, indirect, or implied threats. xxviii. As aforementioned, soon after Duke dropped honor code violations, because there are no supporting real facts to warrant a formal hearing, Defendants Shana Keating, Robert Ross and Robert Ball write to Professor Kira Fabrizio and Duke Administration that they are concerned that Plaintiff look for answers from his text books or someone else write answers for his exams. xxix. As aforementioned, soon after Professor Kira Fabrizio filed an honor code violation against Plaintiff, and Plaintiff awaits Duke to adjudicate honor code violations, Defendants publicized that Plaintiff violated Duke Honor Code and exposed Plaintiff to shame and mortification and public hatred. xxx. As aforementioned, while, Plaintiff awaits Duke to adjudicate honor code violations, and Plaintiff begins to explore methods to file harassment complaint, Defendants made anew allegation that Plaintiff showed a gun on the campus; and as a result Duke begins anew police investigation into the allegations. xxxi. As aforementioned, while, Plaintiff awaits Duke Police to adjudicate a possible criminal activity based on a fabricated fact, Defendants in a schemingly fashion, and systematically Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 120 of 125
    • Page - 121 - of 125 filed complaints based on a fabricated facts against Plaintiff that they are concerned with Plaintiff is being mentally unstable and could violently do something that everyone could regret by characterizing Plaintiff as “Workplace/School shooter”. xxxii. In support of their allegations, Defendants showed Plaintiff’ innocent online posts as an indication that Plaintiff could do something violently and demanded Duke Administration to restrict Plaintiff from attending classes. xxxiii. As aforementioned, since end of July 2009, Defendants intensified their concerted effort to provoke Plaintiff by verbally assaulting Plaintiff, despite those defendants submitted an opinion from a qualified Psychologist stating that Plaintiff is “Probably an early paranoid psychotic” and predisposed to suffer from severe mental distress to the verbal assaults. xxxiv. As aforementioned, when Plaintiff make a public appeal to stop the harassment, defendants write that is was “amusing” to them that Plaintiff is portraying as a victim and asked Duke Administration to deploy more plain clothes policeman to watch Plaintiff. xxxv. As aforementioned, in addition to filing complaints based on fabricated facts, Defendants published Plaintiff’ medications including the strength and brand names of those medications and Professor Pranab Majumdar, went further and told to the class, how those medications work for Plaintiff. xxxvi. As aforementioned, while Plaintiff is subjected to harassment by the Defendants, Plaintiff’ Manager’ at Wyeth Pharmaceuticals, established contact with Defendants Students, and exchanged information about Plaintiff’ reactions to Wyeth employees and Defendants verbal assaults. xxxvii. As aforementioned, Defendants established contacts with Plaintiff’ neighbors through Sarah Rosen Shah and exchanged information about Plaintiff’ reactions to his neighbors and Defendants verbal assaults. 548. The conduct set forth hereinabove was extreme and outrageous and an abuse of the privilege and position of Defendants, and each of them. Said conduct was intended to cause severe emotional distress, or was done in conscious disregard of the probability of causing such distress. Said conduct exceeded the inherent risks of attending an Executive MBA program and was not the sort of conduct normally expected to occur in the Duke. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 121 of 125
    • Page - 122 - of 125 Defendants, and each of them, abused their privilege and engaged in conduct intended to humiliate Plaintiff and to convey the message that he was powerless to defend his rights. Defendants abused their privilege and directly injured Plaintiff by their behavior and conduct towards Plaintiff, and violating the rights of Plaintiff. 549. The foregoing conduct did in fact cause Plaintiff to suffer extreme emotional distress. As a proximate result of said conduct, Plaintiff suffered PTSD, GAD, neurosis, and as aforementioned related physical and emotional injuries; Plaintiff will continue to suffer from embarrassment, anxiety, humiliation and emotional distress in the future. 550. Because, Defendant’ behavior and conduct towards Plaintiff is designed and geared to inflict emotional distress upon Plaintiff and Defendant’ behavior and conduct was wanton, willful and in reckless disregard to the health and financial wellbeing of Plaintiff, punitive damages should be awarded against it in an amount to be determined at trial. 551. WHEREFORE, Plaintiff prays this Honorable Court for the entry of a judgment in Plaintiff’ favor and against Defendants Barns Barton, Robert Ball, Nathaniel Hawkins, Robert Ross, Peter Walton, Dan Paschke, Brooke Balcom, Moira Ringo, Shana Keating, and Anna Gonowon in the sum not less than $260,000 (Two hundred and sixty thousand dollars) damages exclusive of Compensatory damages according to proof; Punitive damages; Exemplary damages; Interest as allowed by law; Costs of suit; and Such other and further relief as this court may deem just and proper and brings this action to recover the same. (VIII) FIFTH CAUSE OF ACTION –COMPLAINT FOR NEGLIGENT INFLICTION OF EMOTIONAL DISTRESS AGAINST BARNES BARTON, ROBERT BALL, ROBERT ROSS, DANIEL PASCHKE, PETER WALTON, NATHANIEL HAWKINS DANIEL PASCHKE, MOIRA RINGO, BROOKE BALCOM, AND SHANA KEATING: 552. Plaintiff incorporates herein by reference all preceding paragraphs 01 through 456 of this Complaint the same as if fully set forth hereinafter. 553. Plaintiff and defendants together attended Executive MBA program for nearly for two years in Raleigh/Durham, North Carolina. 554. Defendants owed plaintiff a duty of care not to inflict emotional distress upon him. Defendants are required to behave in a manner expected of citizens of a civil, safe society. Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 122 of 125
    • Page - 123 - of 125 555. Defendants knew and should have known that failure to exercise due care in their as aforementioned behavior and conduct (filing complaints based on fabricated facts and causing police investigation and causing police to snoop and shadow Plaintiff) would cause plaintiff severe emotional distress. 556. Defendants breached their duty of care by intentionally filing complaints based on fabricated facts and causing police investigation and causing police to snoop and shadow Plaintiff to cause severe emotional distress. 557. Defendants breached their duty of care in that they lied to Duke Administration and to Duke Police about the actual facts and in concocting a story to hide his true actions and the conspiracy under which they operated. 558. As a proximate result of each one of actions by defendants, including those taken by Duke Administration and Duke Police as the agent for defendants, identified in this cause of action, as well as the result of the cumulative effect of one or more of these actions, plaintiff has suffered severe emotional distress, requiring medical attention and placing plaintiff under the care of a physician and manifesting itself in many physical symptoms. Plaintiff now suffers from PTSD, GAD, Neurosis and exhibits loss of appetite, sleep deprivation, insomnia, muscle tension, headaches, and inconceivable grief and fear. 559. WHEREFORE, Plaintiff prays this Honorable Court for the entry of a judgment in Plaintiff’ favor and against Defendants Barns Barton, Robert Ball, Nathaniel Hawkins, Robert Ross, Peter Walton, Dan Paschke, Brooke Balcom, Moira Ringo, Shana Keating, and Anna Gonowon in the sum not less than $260,000 (Two hundred and sixty thousand dollars) damages exclusive of Compensatory damages according to proof; Punitive damages; Exemplary damages; Interest as allowed by law; Costs of suit; and Such other and further relief as this court may deem just and proper and brings this action to recover the same. (IX) PRAYER FOR RELIEF: 560. Wherefore, Plaintiff prays for the following relief: (i) Damages, in an amount to be established at trial, as compensation for injuries to reputation, emotional suffering, past and future economic losses, invasion of privacy, Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 123 of 125
    • Page - 124 - of 125 constitutional deprivations, loss of educational opportunities, loss of future career prospects, legal and other expenses and other injuries proximately caused enhanced by defendants wrongful conduct; (ii) Damages in an amount to established at trial, to punish defendants for fraudulent, willful and wanton and malicious conduct; to punish defendants for outrageous conduct pursued with actual malice that recklessly and callously disregarded Plaintiff physical and emotional well being and constitutional rights; to discourage defendants from engaging in similar conduct in the future; and to deter others similarly situated from engaging in similar wrongful conduct; (iii) An award for reasonable and customary costs, expenses and interest incurred in pursuit of this action; (iv) Any other relief deemed just and proper. (X) JURY TRIAL DEMAND: 561. Plaintiff hereby requests a trial by jury on all claims so triable. Dated: November 15, 2012 0 1 . Vamsidhar Reddy Vurimindi , Plaintiff, Untrained Pro Se 1782 Frankford Ave, Unit 1, Philadelphia, PA 19125 Tel# 267 250 4092 Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 124 of 125
    • Page - 125 - of 125 VERIFICATION I, Vamsidhar Reddy Vurimindi, am a Plaintiff in the above-entitled action. I have read the foregoing complaint and know the contents thereof. The same is true of my own knowledge, except as to those matters which are therein alleged on information and belief, and as to those matters, I believe it to be true. I declare under penalty of perjury that the foregoing is true and correct and that this declaration was executed at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. 0 2 . Dated: November 15, 2012 0 3 . Vamsidhar Reddy Vurimindi , Plaintiff, Untrained Pro Se 1782 Frankford Ave, Unit 1, Philadelphia, PA 19125 Tel# 267 250 4092 Case 1:12-cv-01223 Document 1 Filed 11/15/12 Page 125 of 125