Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Mr. Peterson...

This week I went to my first class on Monday.

Creative Arts.
My teacher (Dr. Peterson is what he likes to call himself) was not there, and there was a lady there giving out surveys for us to take.

She said no one had to take it and we could leave if we wanted to, but that she would appreciate it if we did for some kind of study or something.


I stayed, because I had nothing better to do and I had another class afterwards.

After all my classes that day, I was waiting to get on the bus when Lance came up to me and started talking about how he read something about our creative arts teacher in the newspaper. I wasn't sure if I believed him because the things he was saying were pretty ridiculous.

So I decided to check it out for myself.
Here is what I found:

USU names lewdness suspect
By Matthew K. Jensen and Kim Burgess
Saturday, February 28, 2009 11:41 PM CST
The Utah State University police department on Friday released the name of the professor who was issued a citation for misdemeanor lewdness following an investigation of a sexual act in a school steam room.Tom C. Peterson, a faculty member in Agriculture Systems Technology Education and the former head of the Interior Design program, is listed as one of the people involved in the incident. The Herald Journal received the information Friday afternoon by filing a Government Records Access Management Act (GRAMA) request with the school. Police had earlier declined to release Peterson’s name, citing direction from the university’s legal counsel.Police officials are still searching for a second man suspected in the case, which began at 6 p.m. Tuesday evening when a patron of the school’s Health, Physical Education and Recreation facility walked into the building’s steam room and allegedly saw two people engaged in a sexual act.The witness reported the incident to HPER staff, who called police. They issued a citation of class-B misdemeanor lewdness to Peterson on Wednesday after interviewing him. The witness also spoke to police, telling them he believed Peterson was one of the men in the steam room.

According to police documents, Peterson is scheduled to appear before a judge Tuesday.Law enforcement declined to give further description of the alleged lewd act, saying the investigation is ongoing.The professor did not return calls made by The Herald Journal on Friday. Later, USU spokesperson John DeVilbiss said Peterson did not wish to comment about the case.“We are saddened and concerned by what has been alleged,” DeVilbiss said.He added that the university is “not at a stage to take any disciplinary action” toward Peterson, adding that administrators will “allow for due process and let this work through the judicial system before we initiate any procedures.”Peterson is a long-standing USU faculty member who became an assistant professor in design and merchandising in 1976. Registration records show that this semester he is teaching a creative arts class with 419 students enrolled.

How sick is this?
This guy is married.

What is this world coming to?

I thought I would share because I just can't believe it.

This may not be a big deal to most of you, but it is to me because I'm not sure what is going to happen to my class now.

Plus, I just talked to this guy on Friday.
I can't believe things like this really happen.


Desi said...

I found your blog because I'm a first mom as well, but I have just lurked until now.

This breaks my heart, I had him as a teacher and I worked with his step-daughter, who happens to work in the Public Relations and Marketing office with John DeVilbiss (the spokesman quoted in the article) and I can't imagine how devastating that would be for her to have to deal with at his wife works at the University as well...such a sad story.

fivewalkers said...

EWWWW! Is all I can say.

Mandy said...

ha.. ha.. ha..

Anonymous said...

Tom Petersen is a real person.

He is someone's
and friend

This is what happens when people judge out of ignorance, hate and divisiveness.

It can happen in your family too!

I hope your family is perfect Andee Leigh

At least Desi has some compassion.

Andee said...

Anonymous, who are you?

I never said I was perfect.
I'm FAR from perfect, and if you would even read my blog, you would see that I definitely know that.
I am simply stating my opinion about how truly disgusted I am about this whole situation.
He IS married.
That's the problem.
He's a husband.

This is my blog.
I can say what I want.
If you don't like it, then don't read it.
I'm not judging out of anything.
this was in the news.
So I have the right to worry about this situation.

Blake and BreeAnn said...


1. Clearly Andee knows that Tom Peterson is a "real person". He is her Creative Arts teacher. She has seen him a couple times a week since January.

2. The fact that he is a son, father, brother, uncle, husband and friend is what makes HIS actions and choices so sad and disturbing. She was simply stating that she is disgusted by what he did as a not only from him being a son, father, husband, and everything else you listed, but as HER professor, and as a leader at Utah State University. She has every right to state her opinion.

3. "It can happen in your family too!" You say that like she was attacking his family. These were HIS choices. HE did this to his family, not Andee. She was not coming at his family, she was pointing out that this world has SERIOUS morality issues, and it is disgusting.

4. Apparently you know Tom Peterson. We all feel for his (and yours?) family. But don't you come at MY family and try to put HIS mistakes on my sister.

Anonymous said...

Apparently I do "know" him.

You go to class a couple times a week and allow yourself to be taught by a man that you really don't know. That’s the process he's is your teacher of that material. Nothing more ... a human to be sure.

His family and friends KNOW him. They are reading many peoples "opinions". It hurts them !!

When you share Your opinions and use words like "disgusting" ... that is judgement. That's God's business not ours.

Your blog is on a link from the Voice of the Desert and is quite public now. Guilty or innocent, your comments and others are contributing more pain even though you have a legal "right" too.

I am sure the University will take care of your class worries. This is not their first rodeo with difficulties.

Just think about it ... that's all I am saying ... I am not attacking you. I want to get your attention. You are probably a real sweet young lady like his daughter. She may be your classmate.

It is a troubling time … be part of the healing. REAL Christian Love and remember these three things when we talk or write about others.

1. Is it true?

2. Is it kind?

3. Is it necessary?

It may be true.

My mom said, “if you can say anything nice … don’t say anything at all”.

It's probably necessary for you to call the school about the class schedule. Then you won’t be worried.

PS I really do wish your family “NO HARM” ever. It’s a hard road for that family right now. They will never be the same. Can you imagine the shock for all your loved ones, if someone exposed your personal story on the evening news and newspaper without your permission. All our feet are made of clay ... especially mine.

Be a peace keeper - part of the solution and comfort … help stop judgement and heartache when ever you see it. Even if you personally don't like what is happening. You will be even more proud of yourself. We must stop sadness and suffering when we can.

PSSS. I love the way your family came to protect you from me. They thought I was being a meany. I do see that you have had a beautiful and a unique story that makes you even more admirable in my way of thinking. Perfection rather bores me. Tragic moments make some people better than they even were before. And you do write well Andee.

I just wanted you to think. Your young, pretty and will probably be a compassionate social worker.

Blake and BreeAnn said...

I can't imagine what his family now has to deal with. It is heartbreaking.
I'm sorry if you felt like we/she was coming at your family. It really was quite the opposite of what we were trying to do.
Our prayers are with his family.

Anonymous said...

It is hard for me not to judge things that are different.

In the biggest picture, we're all family.

Thanks for considering my thoughts.

We are all messengers when we remember HIS message.

April said...

I'm a USU JCOM student.
I had Peterson last semester.
I don't know if any of the allegation is true or not.
I'm with Nancy Williams when I ask, was it right for the media to publish his name? LHJ said they did it cuz he's prominent and paid lots of tax dollars. That's a little weird to me. It's kind of an uncomfortable situation all around. But his name is out there attached to the story now... and my hopes for wellness and comfort are with his family.
Kudo to you, Andee, for being yourself and for not taking the post down. I can totally appreciate you sharing your own perspective on it, and you're right--this is YOUR blog, probably primarily for YOUR friends and family. Thanks for letting us visit and contribute. I would have probably had the same reaction as you-- Peterson seems to be a respectable, friendly enough guy, and he does his job well... so it doesn't seem to add up immediately. I'd be processing it just like you.
Still, like I said, I don't know if it's true or not, so I'm not jumping to any conclusions.