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UVA School of Law Receiving Plenty of Headlines
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Dean Paul Mahoney, of the University of Virginia School of Law, wrote a fundraising letter for the school’s $150 million capital campaign that singled out the sense of community the school provides. On December 7, law student Joshua Gomes was arrested after allegedly trying to steal official transcript paper from Carruthers Hall.

“As an alum, a lot of what I’m getting is, ‘Oh my God, the law school has gone crazy,’” said an anonymous UVA Law graduate, according to Charlottesville News and Arts. “This is so different from the image that UVA has worked so hard to cultivate over the years.”

  
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Gomes is scheduled for a preliminary hearing on January 12. The day prior to Gomes’ arrest, police were investigating Carruthers Hall for possible signs of breaking and entering. There was a hidden video camera inside the building that has images that allegedly identify Gomes as the culprit.

Gomes was arrested the very next day after searches of his home and car provided bolt cutters, a box for a coathook camera, and transcript papers. It has not been determined what Gomes was doing with the camera. Gomes is not the only law student from UVA to make headlines in 2011 though.

Jonathan Perkins wrote a letter back in April to the Virginia Law Review, falsely claiming that he was mistreated by police officers at UVA. The incorrect allegation started a debate about whether Perkins should face a trial with the Honor Code plus a possible expulsion. Honor Code trials at UVA are confidential, but a LinkedIn profile for Perkins claims he is an alum of the school and works as a legal intern with a law firm in Pennsylvania. This could mean that he did stand trial and was found innocent or that a trial was never heard.

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A second-year law student, Daniel Watkins, was charged with assaulting and stalking an ex-girlfriend back in May. A judge from Albemarle found that the evidence against Watkins was insubstantial, forcing him to throw out the charges.

Despite most of these cases being out of court it does not mean that they are out of mind or out of the media. In fact, stories keep popping up on news reports and blogs all across the country regarding UVA Law School students. One of those blogs, Above the Law, made sure that they got their stance out to the public. The website’s editor, Elie Mystal, had the following to say:



“The reason why UVA pops up a lot in our stories is because crazy, funny stuff happens at UVA,” said Mystal. Mystal also said that if these incidents were occurring at other schools, they would write about that school as well.

“When we post about UVA, there’s a bigger pop than pretty much any school we post about, except for the New York schools, Harvard, and Yale,” said Mystal. “Two days later, nobody remembers it. These people’s lives are not ruined because something snarky was written about them.”­



 

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