Monday, May 2, 2011

UMSL Lecturer Don Giljum Assaults Citizen Journalist. Police Confiscate Video.

Earlier this week I went to University of Missouri-St. Louis (UMSL) to try and get the Chancellor to comment on the controversial videos that had come from Professor Judy Ancel and Don Giljum’s Labor Studies class. I visited Wood’s Hall and spoke to several high-ranking University officials on camera. Never once was I told I was trespassing, or that I could not film.
Because of that positive experience at Wood’s Hall, I felt comfortable returning to UMSL on Saturday, April 30th, in an attempt to interview Don Giljum, arriving at UMSL at approximately 2:15 pm. The class was scheduled to take a break at 2:30. I found Giljum’s classroom, waited outside quietly and not approaching the door so as not to disrupt the class. I had waited several minutes when Giljum (I recognized him from the videos) and another man exited the classroom, walking by me as they proceeded down a hall. I stayed put as I realized Giljum would have to return to his classroom at some point.

Giljum and the other man parted ways and he started to head back to his classroom.

I asked, ”Are You Don Giljum?” as he approached. ”Yes,” he responded, coming towards me. A press pass hanging around my neck was clearly visible. He walked up to me and stood in front of my camera with his back to the classroom door. I asked “When was the last time you committed industrial sabotage, or threatened the use of industrial sabotage to gain leverage in a Union negotiation?” “Never, said Giljum, “that was all taken out of context.”

He asked me my name and I told him. He then asked me who I was with. I told him SharpElbows.Net. “Are you the one who did the internet hatchet job on me?” he asked. “I didn’t see any hatchet job, just your words on video” I said. That’s when Giljum appeared to lose it!

He grabbed my camera, breaking it off from the mono-pod upon which it was mounted. The mono-pod fell to the ground behind me and the camera slammed to the floor, tumbling under a desk on the side of the hall. He then tried to punch me. Luckily, I was able to quickly mostly slip Giljum’s punch, stepping back away from him. Once I felt I was at a safe distance, I pulled my back-up video camera out of my pocket and was able to capture a small piece of video.

After he was back in his classroom, I retrieved my camera from under the desk and attempted to view the video to no avail. The camera was rolling when he grabbed at it, so the video file was damaged and not viewable on the camera. I assumed I would have to wait until I got home to try and retrieve it with my computer.

At this point several people left the classroom. I called information on my cell phone to try to get the number for Campus Police. I wasn’t seriously hurt, so I didn’t want to bother with 911 call. While I was on the phone the campus police arrived. Someone had apparently gone and got them. I immediately told the officers that Giljum had assaulted me, damaged my property and I wanted him arrested.

One officer went into the classroom to talk to Giljum and others. I waited outside with another officer. When the 1st officer emerged with Giljum he looked at me and said “You’re getting the same charges.” I said “What do you mean?”

That’s when they placed me under arrest. I asked several times what I was being charged with, receiving no answer. They hand-cuffed my hands behind me. They were tight and I asked the policeman to loosen them; he declined. They then led both Giljum and me down the stairs, his hands cuffed in front of him, for some reason, while mine remained hand-cuffed uncomfortable behind me.

When we reached the street, the first cop told me I was trespassing and needed permission to come on campus and film. I told him that was never mentioned to me during my visit to Wood’s Hall earlier this week. I had roamed the hall freely with my video camera and no one objected at all at that time.

I was transported to the UMSL Police Station where I was “booked” for Trespassing, my fingerprints were taken, as was a mug-shot.

At that point the Sergeant came in to review the situation. I showed him the damage to my camera and told him what had happened. He asked to see the video and I explained the file was damaged and I couldn’t display it to him on the camera. He then said that they were confiscating it because it was evidence of property damage (the camera itself) and also keeping the SD video card because the video was evidence of both my trespassing and Giljum’s assault. I protested but he refused to return it. I then asked if I could simply plug it into my lap top to copy the files. My lap top was on the table in front of me along with all of my other possessions. He refused.

Eventually, I was released but was given no paperwork: no citation for tresspassing; no note, or piece of paper with a court date; no receipt for my confiscated video camera and digital media card – nothing.

They say the camera is locked in evidence, along with my video, until at least Monday.

Cross Posted at Big Government


  1. It would appear the Leftist Perfesser tolerates no dissent. Which makes him a well educated ...

    J.A.U.L. (pronounced “jowl”): Just Another Unhinged Leftie.

    "Because the Only Good Progressive is a Failed Progressive"

  2. For some reason you forgot to mention that you were harassing college students in the hallway and that Ben Evans followed students to the police station and was baiting them to "throw a swing" at him.

  3. The offense of criminal trespass is not complete until you are told to leave by a representative of the property and you refuse. If what you describe in your narrative is complete then it sounds like you were unlawfully arrested.

  4. I hope your story gets great press, and you sue the bastards for false arrest. We have a similar situation going on in California with a professor selling grades, I wish someone would follow up with the same tenacity. Check the blog to see the videos. Outrageous!

  5. Your backup video shows this guy to be clearly unhinged (ironic, isn't it, that he's been shown up for promoting violence as a legitimate means to an end). I know you from watching you at Tea Party events since day one. You've always been respectful in your dealings with people on both sides of any issue. If you were "harassing" students in the hallway, as Anon here says, then you were behaving in a way that I've never seen you behave before.

    Keep up the good work. --I hear the guy resigned from UMSL. True?

  6. Did you get the camera back? That video, if accessible, would be priceless.

    Keep up the good work.

  7. On what grounds did you think it was appropriate to enter the classroom space? Because it was a public institution? Because of freedom of press?

    Sorry, bro, but it's not appropriate and is undoubtedly prohibited by UMSL policy and by FERPA (Family Educational Right to Privacy Act - regardless of whether you are entering a classroom at a public or private institution. You can't put students' faces in a publicly accessible form like video or a directory unless they explicitly allow it. That's why you were, indeed, trespassing.

    Any and every faculty member across the country would tell you to get the hell out of their classroom if you poked a camera in there without their explicit permission as well as the permission of each student in there.

    You have rights as a member of the press (as much as it pains me to call a hack like you a legitimate journalist), but educators and students have a right to privately conduct their classes, too. And none of those rights supercede the other.

  8. Uh, if this guy was guilty of violating FERPA, why wasn't he charged with that? Why trespassing? Our tax dollars support that place and taxpayers have every right to go there. By the way, only the US Attorney can charge someone with violating Federal Law, not UMSL cops.

  9. FERPA really? What evidence was there that he entered the classroom? What exceptions existed that allowed for a warrantless arrest?

  10. Look, I acknowledge that the professor shouldn't have lost it and broken this guy's camera. He destroyed property. If the police thought it enough to warrant his arrest for that, so be it. He should have stated that the cameraman did not have permission to disrupt his class and then called UMSL security to let them know that his class was being disrupted.

    That doesn't change the fact that being a taxpayer is not license to exercise one's right to free speech or press and disrupt his class. Whether he entered the class or not is immaterial. He disrupted the continuation of the class session by prodding the professor with questions.

    You may not believe anything I am saying and think I am some pink-o, which I am fine with, so I encourage you to ask the General Counsel of the UM system if a person who is not affiliated with the university is allowed under current statute or university policy to disrupt a class to exercise their right to free speech or press. Here's his info (

    Like I said, most universities (public and private) restrict freedom of speech. The U. of Minnesota states that "courts have long recognized that the exercise of [free speech and press] rights is not infringed when the state adopts reasonable restrictions to protect the rights of other members of the community." (

    And, yes, FERPA...really. That is the law of the land. Any institution receiving federal funds (grants, student loans) must not release personally identifiable student data information, including their pictures, without the consent of that student.

    Here it is for your viewing pleasure:


  12. The issue is: Why isn't a trespasser and potentially violent terrorist treated like a trespasser and potentially violent terrorist?

    Clearly, whether Adam Sharp is a right wing, left wing, or an al-Qaeda operative he has been using terrorist tactics to advance his agenda. Just because he's a camera wielding white guy with a blog site doesn't give him special license to invade university classrooms.

    Rather than confronting Sharp, Don Giljum should have promptly called the police reporting an unauthorized man is trespassing on university property and threatening him and his students.

    It is not necessary for Adam Sharp to be wearing dynamite strapped to his body. It is enough that he was disrupting a peaceful university classroom to be treated like the terrorist that "Sharp Elbow" happens to be.

    Let us not forget that in New Mexico, Congressional Representative Gabrielle Giffords was innocently speaking with her constituents when Jared Lee Loughner who didn't like her rhetoric shot the woman in her head.

    Sharp and Loughner have a lot in common, and the University of Missouri and local police share a responsibility of protecting their faculty such as Don Giljum and its students from these kinds of extremists!

  13. FERPA cannot be violated by an individual, only be an institution. By allowing Sharp, a journalist, to film the classroom, UMSL was violating FERPA, but Sharp was not violating FERPA by filming the classroom.
    Of course, this does mean that what Sharp was doing was a barred by the campus media policy; and as a journalist he knows this. He also knows that the policy specifies that any journalist who does not follow the campus press policy is trespassing.
    What I find interesting is that Giljum's assault charge does not appear on the campus police blotter.

  14. OMG! You compare Sharp to Loughner! You're sick and a chicken! No wonder you posted as Anonymous.


  16. If a university professor telling someone to leave thier classroom is not a representative of a university, then no official of any univeristy anywhere can tell anyone to leave not anytime form the federaly protected private space of a classroom. Additionally, by Sharp violating the Student Privacy Act, by committing a felony, either federal or state, while in conjunction with a state misdeameanor turns simple terspassing into criminal trespassing. Your going to the joint Sharp. You will really find out what teabaging one you are there. Are going to get married while you are in the joint, or will your celly (I hope that he is a brother from the hood) pimp you out for cigs and fritos.

  17. Wow, I see that a nice collection of nutjob commies have shown up to disparage your activities. Good job, you must have hit them where it hurts.

  18. The law applies to all people even Adam Sharp, Communies and Teabaggers. What is so disagreeable to any sane person is Sharp, Ben Evans, and the Giljum's so-called labor studies student is lying by editing, that removes any and all context of any event, presenting people in a "flase light," a careless disregard for the truth, fraud, trespassing, peace distribution, stalking, harassment, violating the privacy rights of students, and intimidation. Anyway did Sharp go to Joseph Goebbels School of Journalism at Teabag University, Berlin, Germany, Class of '33? I wonder when was the that last time that Bill Hennessy threatened to kill his wife. Yes, that is true there exist a restraining order in the St. Louis County Court by the former Mrs. William T. Hennesey against Mr. Bill Hennessey "the undertaker."

  19. I love all the leftist legal experts weighing in. Here's a tip, you lose a lot of credibility as soon as you begin your opinion with the word "Bro". LOL

  20. Communism socialism is good. Our Owners are scared to death we will know this and act on it.
    "First they ignore you. Then they ridicule you. And then they attack you and want to burn you. And then they build monuments to you."
    "First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win."

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