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Fired head of security sues Roxbury Community College

RCC hasn’t reported any sexual offenses to the federal government in the past decade, even though students and others told administrators they had been victims over that time.

Wendy Maeda/The Boston Globe

RCC hasn’t reported any sexual offenses to the federal government in the past decade, even though students and others told administrators they had been victims over that time.

The former head of security at Roxbury Community College is suing the school and three of its officials for wrongful termination and defamation, arguing that he was fired for disclosing the college’s failure to report allegations of sexual assault on campus as required by federal law.

“Instead of protecting students . . . the administration and officers at the college have protected their own,” a lawyer for Thomas Galvin, the school’s former director of facilities and public safety, wrote in a civil complaint filed Oct. 19 in ­Middlesex Superior Court.

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None of the officials named as defendants in the suit — interim president Linda Edmonds ­Turner, vice president of administration and finance Chuks ­Okoli, and human resources ­director P. Paul Alexander — could be reached for comment Thursday night.Karen Schwartzman, a spokeswoman for the college, declined to discuss the lawsuit.

“Roxbury Community College officials have not had an opportunity to review this complaint,” she said in a statement. “The college will decline further comment, except to say that we stand behind the action we took and will vigorously defend our position in court.”

According to the complaint, Galvin was fired in August in retaliation for his actions as a whistle-blower.

“Despite that it was Mr. ­Galvin who exposed the cover-up of reported sexual assaults on campus to the college and then reported those failures to the [US] Department of Education and the director of state audits, [the defendants] set up Mr. Galvin as ‘the fall guy’ in ­order to protect the college and their jobs,” the complaint states.

The allegations of sexual ­assault came to ­Galvin’s attention in 2010 and 2011, according to the complaint, and one involved a professor who was accused of sexually violating a student and who had been fired in 2006 after another student made a similar accusation.

Orestes Brown, a lawyer for Galvin, said Thursday that his client was unavailable for comment. Galvin, 55, of Belmont, is the brother of Secretary of State William F. Galvin. He is currently unemployed.

Last month, the college ­released a lengthy document, detailing what it said were serious allegations of crime ­reported to the school in 2011, as well as many ­allegations from 2010 and 2009 that it had previously failed to ­include in statistics provided to the federal government, as mandated under the Clery Act.

A Globe investigation found that RCC had not reported any sexual offenses to the federal government in the past decade, even though students and others complained to administrators that they had been victims of sexual crimes over that time.

Roxbury Community College has not yet filed a response to Galvin’s complaint, and no hearing dates have been set.

Galvin contends school officials have tried to blame him for the possible lapses in crime reporting. “Mr. Galvin’s reputation, physical health, and emotional state have suffered as a result of his firing by the college,” the complaint states. He is seeking unspecified damages against the college and the other defendants.

Mary Carmichael of the Globe staff contributed to this report. Travis Andersen can be reached at tandersen@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @TAGlobe.
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