UW-Madison moves to expel Alec Cook, student accused in string of sex assaults

Alec Cook

WISC-TV

MADISON, Wis. -- A University of Wisconsin-Madison disciplinary committee has voted to expel a student accused of sexually assaulting and harassing nearly a dozen women.

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Alec Cook

CBS affiliate WISC

UW-Madison spokeswoman Meredith McGlone sent an email to reporters Tuesday saying the committee found Alec Cook responsible for violating university student conduct policies related to a crime of violence and upheld the university’s expulsion recommendation.

McGlone said federal privacy laws prohibit her from disclosing any other information. Cook, of Edina, Minnesota, has until March 24 to appeal the decision to Chancellor Rebecca Blank.

Cook, 20, faces a total of 21 criminal charges that include strangulation, sexual assault, stalking and false imprisonment involving 10 women dating back to March 2015, reports CBS affiliate WISC-TV. He pleaded not guilty to the charges in February.

Cook’s attorney, Chris Van Wagner, says the disciplinary committee hearing was Feb. 24 and the panel voted 2-1 to expel him. The university didn’t notify him of the vote until just before midnight on Friday. Van Wagner says Cook didn’t get a fair hearing and he’ll appeal.

The decision to expel Cook is not final until the appeal period is up, Van Wagner told WISC-TV. In a statement released to the station, Van Wagner said he would not discuss evidence presented at the hearing.

“We are going to honor the educational privacy restrictions even if they chose not to with this press release,” Van Wagner said.