Professor who allegedly assaulted pro-life group pleads no contest

A University of California at Santa Barbara (UCSB) professor has pleaded no contest to three charges after allegedly stealing signage from a pro-life group and assaulting a protester on campus last March.

Assistant Professor of Feminist Studies Mireille Miller-Young found herself in the middle of some controversy this spring after she assaulted the pro-life group, stole their signs, and called one of the students a “terrorist” because of the group’s anti-abortion stance.

The no contest plea is not technically an admission of guilt. Miller-Young’s plea means that she will accept the recommended sentence by the prosecutor.

Thrin Short, a 16-year-old pro-life activist, was standing in the free speech zone when Miller-Young approached.

“Before she grabbed the sign, she was mocking me and talking over me in front of the students, saying that she was twice as old as me and had three degrees, so they should listen to her and not me,” Short told Fox News in March.

A cell phone video corroborates Short’s story. The video shows Miller-Young walking through a campus building holding protestors’ sign. Miller-Young attempted to flee the scene via an elevator, but when Short held the door from closing in hopes of retrieving her sign, Miller-Young allegedly shoved her three times.

According to a report filed by UCSB police, Miller-Young said at the time that she was “triggered” by the signs and graphic images the protesters were displaying. She later allegedly claimed she had a “moral right” to act as she did.

According to the mission statement on the university’s website, UCSB students “are full participants in an educational journey of discovery that stimulates independent thought, critical reasoning, and creativity.”

Sentencing will occur on August 14 and it is likely Miller-Young will be ordered to pay a fine, perform community service, and attend therapy.

UCSB Director of News and Media Relations George Foulsham told Campus Reform in a statement that university policy prohibits comment on personnel matters.

“Miller-Young is not currently teaching any courses and is not scheduled to teach any courses during the fall quarter," he said, although he did note that Miller-Young continues to be employed by the university.

The university did not say what, if any, action UCSB is taking in response to Miller-Young's breach of the mission statement.

Miller-Young did not respond to a request for comment from Campus Reform.

Follow the author of this article on Twitter: @GMillerThompson