Exclusive: Allegations against Blake Wentworth, who was not terminated last year despite misconduct findings, renewed in significant development in scandal
Kathleen Gutierrez struggles to get out of bed each day. For the past year, the 28-year-old University of California at Berkeley graduate student has battled extreme fatigue, unexpected body aches and debilitating anxiety.
At the root of her stress is her fear that at any moment on campus, she could run into Blake Wentworth, a professor in her department who she says repeatedly sexually harassed her – touching her inappropriately and frequently making offensive comments, including telling her “I’m so attracted to you” and bragging about doing drugs off of a stripper’s body.
In October, records show, a university investigation concluded that Wentworth violated the college’s harassment policies and made “unwelcome sexual advances” toward her. But more than six months later, the professor has faced no discipline and remains employed at UC Berkeley – with an office two doors away from Gutierrez.
“I don’t feel safe,” Gutierrez said in a recent interview. “That exhaustion, that’s physical and emotional at times, really weighs on me.”
At least six other students have given recent testimonials expressing concerns about Wentworth, and several have filed complaints, according to a recent letter sent by multiple faculty members to supervisors.