The University of Montana School of Law was forced to permanently bar a former student from returning to campus thanks to his alleged actions within the school building. Dean Paul Kirgis waited until a permanent trespass
order was issued before providing identifying information about the alleged perpetrator to the student body.
According to Dean Kirgis and U. Montana police chief Marty Ludemann, Menachem Harrison, a 2012 graduate of Montana Law, interrupted a class to complain about a professor. Ludemann said Harrison was not armed, and although his behavior was “disturbing,” he believed Harrison did not pose a threat to himself or others. An officer was stationed outside of the classroom of the professor whose lecture was interrupted.
Here’s an excerpt from the email Dean Kirgis sent to students about the incident:
Now that the Order is in place, I am providing the entire law school community with his name and, attached to this message, his photo. If you see Mr. Harrison on campus, call Campus Police at 243-4000—or simply 911—immediately.
We are all on edge with the dismaying increase in public incidents of violence in recent years, many focused on schools and campuses. His behavior was disturbing enough to warrant action, but this is not a situation in which we are trying to head off an imminent threat. We are simply being careful.
Harrison’s picture (above, right) was altered by U. Montana campus police to reflect what he looked like at the time of incident. Dean Kirgis said he did not believe Harrison had returned to the law school campus since his alleged disruption.
Mental health issues can persist even after one has graduated from law school. Most colleges and universities have counseling and psychological services resources that students can turn to if they are in crisis or would like counseling, even after hours. If these services are not available at your school, and if you’re depressed and in need help, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (1-800-273-8255) or a lawyer assistance program in your state. Please reach out if you need assistance.