COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Student squad leaders from the Ohio State marching band are offering themselves as witnesses to a task force reviewing cultural issues surrounding the firing of band director Jonathan Waters.
In an email distributed on their behalf Tuesday by the band alumni association, the students attached a host of documents that they said will prove Waters "an advocate for student safety, equality, and respect between all members." The records document band policies, training events and protocols that they say prove sexual harassment and hazing were not tolerated under Waters' watch.
University leaders stand by the July 24 firing of Waters. His dismissal came after a two-month university investigation concluded he knew about but failed to stop a "sexualized culture" of rituals that included partially-clad marching, groping games and sometimes explicit nicknames.