Tuesday, August 12, 2008

TSU whistleblowers awarded $540,000

Houston, Tex. - A jury awarded $540,000 to three former Texas Southern University student activists Thursday and let the school know that retaliation against whistle-blowers won't be tolerated.

"We wanted to send a message that this should not happen again — the violation of First Amendment rights and the false arrest," one juror said after the jury added $350,000 in punitive damages to the $190,000 they awarded the trio last week to compensate them for being kicked out of school and temporarily charged with a crime after helping uncover a financial scandal.

After deciding the extra damages Thursday afternoon, 10 jurors were grilled by the attorneys on their thoughts. Several said they were impressed by the young men. Juror Donnie Mathis hugged the three and said she was proud of them.

For more on this article, go to The Houston Chronicle

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