Millikin Supports Long-time Psychology Professor Despite Criminal Record RevelationBy Staff Reporter, UniversityHerald Reporter
The 61-year-old chairman of the Millikin's Department of Behavior Sciences continues to remain at his post and receive support from the university officials even after recently being identified as the culprit who killed his mother, father and sister as a teenager.
When Dr. James D St. James was 15 years old, he fatally shot his father in the chest and his mother and sister in the face with a 0.22-caliber rifle at his family home outside Austin, Texas, in 1967. He was then known as James Wolcott.
At the time, Wolcott evaded prison time on grounds of insanity. During the hearings, he admitted to having sniffed some airplane glue on the night of murdering his family.
The court ordered him to undergo treatment at a state mental hospital until he regained sanity. The treatment lasted for six years.
The university authorities stated that since the psychology professor changed his name from James Wolcott to James St. James, this particular criminal record did not pop up in his background check. He changed his name immediately after his release from the mental facility.
Despite the allegations, the university is backing James because of his excellent record as an educator since 1986 and his leadership skills. The university expects the professor back on campus in the fall.
"Millikin University has only recently been made aware of Dr. St. James' past," said a statement issued by the university. "Given the traumatic experiences of his childhood, Dr. St. James' efforts to rebuild his life and obtain a successful professional career have been remarkable. The university expects James to teach at Millikin this fall."
"........taught a variety of courses at Millikin, served in various leadership roles and built a successful academic career, receiving academic awards including the 1997 Teaching Excellence and Leadership Award," said the statement.
Lana Hinshaw Klan, a videographer at CBS 2, was stunned to hear that her old psychology lecturer actually killed his entire family 46 years ago.
"He really is a good guy. I have really fond memories, and I feel sorry for him because his life is turned upside down," Klan said.