Graduate Sues College That Barred Him From Commencement

July 11, 2011

Remember the North Carolina student who was barred from commencement in part because of comments he made on Facebook? Well, he’s back. And he’s still very, very mad—so mad that he’s suing his alma mater over the episode, which involved remarks he posted about the college’s recovery from tornado damage.

In a complaint filed Friday in North Carolina state court, Roman Caple accuses Saint Augustine’s College of breach of contract, negligence, and intentional infliction of emotional distress. Mr. Caple is seeking more than $10,000 in damages in a case that is being promoted by the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, a national civil-liberties group. Among other things, his legal complaint laments the cost of the cap and gown that he wasn’t able to use and the pain that not walking allegedly caused him:

As a result of Saint Augustine College having unjustly denied Plaintiff a once-in-a-lifetime experience, Plaintiff has incurred extreme mental anguish and distress.

Plaintiff has suffered bouts of uncontrollable crying, loss of appetite, difficulty sleeping, and loss of confidence.

Moreover, as a result of his grief associated with having lost the opportunity to “walk”, Plaintiff is experiencing difficulty transitioning from his role as student to the role of a professional.

Plaintiff is undergoing therapy.

For Saint Augustine’s side of the controversy, follow this link to an earlier statement that the college released.

Schools: St. Augustine’s University Cases: Saint Augustine’s College: Student Prohibited from Walking at Graduation Due to Facebook Post