University of Missouri professor charged with assault in fracas with journalist

The University of Missouri communications professor caught on video scuffling with a journalist during a November campus demonstration was charged with third-degree assault Monday morning, the Columbia city prosecutor’s office confirmed to

A summons with a yet-to-be determined court date is set to be mailed to UM assistant professor of communications Melissa Click. If she’s found guilty, her penalty would ultimately be up to a judge, but would likely require paying a fine, a spokesperson from the prosecutor’s office said.

The video, which was quickly posted to YouTube, showed Click confronting videographer Mark Schierbecker during a campus protest on Nov. 9 and apparently trying to block him from shooting video on a public quad. At one point, Schierbecker asks to speak with Click, who promptly tells him to leave.

“No, you need to get out,” she says, pointing away and then seeming to grab Schierbecker’s camera. “You need to get out. You need to get out.”

When Schierbecker refuses to leave, Click yells to a group of nearby demonstrators: “Who wants to help me get this reporter out of here? I need some muscle over here.”

The campus protests began over perceived racial issues at the University of Missouri. System President Tim Wolfe resigned during the demonstrations.

Click has since issued an apology and resigned a courtesy appointment at the Missouri School of Journalism. That appointment allowed her to serve on graduate panels for students from other academic units, the Columbia Missourian reported.

But she retained her primary position at the school, though the UM Board of Curators called for her firing just last week.

“While the University of Missouri seems to have no accountability, the judicial system in Missouri does,” Columbia State Representative Caleb Jones told ABC17.