The shooting of a dog in Fort Mill has led to a separate lawsuit against Winthrop University.
David Royal Lee, a former Winthrop graduate student, sued the town of Fort Mill and its police in 2015 over the fatal shooting of his dog in 2013.
Now Lee has also sued Winthrop, claiming he was improperly dismissed from school after his dog was shot and killed, court documents show.
Lee claims in two federal lawsuits that the shooting of his dog, named “T,” was unlawful and that it interrupted his graduate studies because of his “extreme anxiety” and “emotional distress.”
Lee claims gross negligence and intentional infliction of emotional distress in the suit against Winthrop. He argues that officials at the school knew of the “close personal relationship” between Lee and his “former canine companion.”
Lee claims that Winthrop and two professors didn’t give him due process and that they violated his rights to an education because of how the school handled his need to put studies on hold.
The suit alleges Lee suffered “severe emotional distress” in how the faculty handled his need for time off, and eventually dismissed him, court records show.
Elliot Field, the Charlotte lawyer representing Lee in both lawsuits, declined comment on either the dog lawsuit or the lawsuit against Winthrop, which was filed in August.
Will Davidson of Columbia is the lawyer representing Winthrop and the professors. In a response filed this week in federal court, Winthrop denied all the allegations.
The lawsuit about the dog’s shooting also is pending in both state and federal courts, public records show.
Lee, who lives in Fort Mill, sued the town and two police officers after the dog was shot and killed, claiming that his dog was “unlawfully shot,” court records show.
Fort Mill officials and their lawyer, David DeMasters of Columbia, have denied all of Lee’s claims, court documents show.
DeMasters declined comment Thursday, saying he could not talk about pending litigation. Winthrop officials also declined comment.