An Augustana University Professor is on leave after being charged with sexual contact without consent.

Reynold Nesiba, who was recently elected to the South Dakota Senate, was arrested Monday shortly after teaching a class.  

According to court papers, Nesiba allegedly attacked a woman he met on Facebook and met with in-person a few times.  On the day of the reported incident, the victim says Nesiba tried taking her shirt off.  The papers also say Nesiba told the victim, ‘You don’t need those pants,’ and began to unbuckle them. 

On Tuesday, the school announced Nesiba is on leave until further notice.  

Read the full message that Augustana Unversity President Rob Oliver sent to students below:

Augustana Students, 

This message is to inform you that Dr. Reynold Nesiba, professor of economics, is on leave until further notice. This is in response to an investigation involving Dr. Nesiba which Augustana University became aware of just yesterday.

Dr. Nesiba is a long-serving professor, an exceptional scholar, an advocate, and an active member of our community. However, we must take these allegations seriously, and the well-being of our students is our top priority. 

The alleged event did not involve an Augustana student nor did it take place on Augustana’s campus. 

Until this matter is resolved, Dr. Nesiba has requested a leave of absence so he can focus on the situation at hand and the University and our students can focus on finishing up the fall semester without distraction. 

It is reasonable that members of our campus community may have questions about what happens now. To that end, we share these important points with you:
• If Dr. Nesiba was your advisor, you will be receiving a notification soon about who your replacement advisor is. 
• If you have classes with Dr. Nesiba, those classes will continue. Dr. Nesiba’s classes will be taught by other members of the Augustana faculty for the remainder of the semester. 
• Many resources are available to help. Campus Life and Chapel of Reconciliation staff are available to respond to concerns students may have.  
I apologize for any disruption this issue may have caused. 

For Augustana,
Rob Oliver