Professor gets just 6-week ban for sexually harassing women

A Michigan State University professor sexually harassed six women over a 17-year span, including repeated references to sex toys and his erotic swing, according to a university-sanctioned report — but has returned to teaching full-time after just a six-week suspension.

Robert Wiseman, a physiology professor in the College of Osteopathic Medicine, engaged in a pattern of “unwanted, persistent and pervasive” sexual behavior toward six of the nine women who accused him of misconduct at the university since 2002, one year after he started working there, according to a report by MSU’s Office of Institutional Equity.

One woman told an independent law firm hired by the school that Wiseman in 2002 made inappropriate comments to her and another woman while staring at their breasts, saying their buttons were open, according to the report obtained by the Lansing State Journal.

“Is the seat going to be wet when you get up?” Wiseman also asked the women.

Another woman said Wiseman made ongoing, crude sexual references despite her telling him she wasn’t interested in him romantically. Wiseman told her “kinky things,” she recalled to investigators, including about his collection of sex toys and an erotic swing he claimed to own.

Wiseman also told the woman that her size would make her a good fit for his swing, as well as boasts about “how great he was and how he can satisfy women” sexually, the woman said.

Wiseman downplayed the alleged remarks as “mutual consensual discourse,” but a second woman told investigators that Wiseman also mentioned his sex swing to her and made repeated unwanted advances, according to the report.

“He is disgusting and manipulative,” the woman said. “I view him as dangerous, bullish and as a threat. He uses his status to do what he does.”

Wiseman, who did not return a request for comment Tuesday, was suspended without pay for six weeks between late February and early April for his actions. He characterized the allegations as unspecific and denied acting inappropriately.

Two women also recalled separate incidents when Wiseman made vulgar comments to a group after they said they had sore knees after a weekend of volleyball.

“Oh I’m sure that’s not the only reason why you were on your knees this weekend,” Wiseman said, according to the report.

Wiseman, meanwhile, denied making any comment with sexual overtones.

The relationship between Wiseman and his nine total accusers was unclear due to redactions in the report, according to the Lansing Journal.

The report is the latest black eye for Michigan State, where William Strampel — a former dean who oversaw disgraced sports doctor Larry Nassar — was found guilty earlier this month of misconduct in office and willful neglect of duty.

Strampel, 71, was charged in March 2018 during an investigation into the handling of complaints against Nassar, who is now serving a prison sentence of up to 175 years after pleading guilty to sexually assaulting nine women and a family friend under the guise of treatment and possessing child pornography.

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