Letter To The Editor: Statement From Jackson Cooney

The Pleiad received the following statement from Jackson Cooney in response to an article published on Nov. 7.

I was accused of saying some horrible things on the night of October 29, 2022. That night ended with an argument at the ATO house because we asked a group of students to leave our party. In the days afterward the students that had gotten kicked out picked up megaphones and started blaming me personally for not only getting kicked out but accusing me of saying horrible things while I did it.

The Pleiad decided to give the protesters a larger platform, and on Monday November 7, ran an article that listed me, by name, as saying these terrible things. That article isn’t just for Albion students to see, it is now for the world to see. Based on a one-sided narrative. Which is NOT true. One of the “witnesses” quoted by the Pleiad was not even at the party.

The article gives a version of events given by people who were trying to get into our fraternity party at the end of the night. The party ended at 2:00AM, and they were trying to get in at 1:55AM. They were turned away by two ATO members who were manning the door. They were told they could not come in because the party was almost over. I was sitting on the couch inside and could hear them arguing back, and I went over to the door to help my fraternity brothers and let the students know that it was too late to come in. After I told them to leave, one of them hit me in the face. It was late at night, I was tired, and yes, I used swear words when I told them to leave. But I did not do the things they are alleging. I did not use ANY racist or homophobic slurs. I did not spit on anyone. I did not hit anyone.

There were a lot of people around during this so called altercation. Not only were there ATO members, but campus safety and the Albion Police were there. They were the ones that handled the situation and told us that we had done nothing wrong. The Pleiad said that they reached out to me and that I failed to respond by publication time. I could not respond because campus safety advised me not to comment because of the ongoing investigation. 

The article references an individual from a different fraternity to try to reinforce what these protesters lied about me saying. That same fraternity member was upset by how he was quoted in the article and reported the discrepancy to campus safety. What actually happened is that I warned the other fraternities to watch out for this group of students trying to get into their house at the end of their parties so they could be prepared. 

I filed an incident report with campus safety after being verbally and physically assaulted during the altercation. The protesters have threatened me personally and the entire ATO house. At the administration’s suggestion, I requested no contact orders against the protesters for my safety and that of my fraternity. I have been overwhelmed by the number of people that have told me that they know these allegations are not true. My fraternity brothers, my teammates, my friends, and even people that I have not seen or heard from in a while have reached out to support me. I am grateful for that support.

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