BERKELEY (KCBS) — The Cal Bears assistant men’s basketball coach who was dismissed over alleged sexual harassment is fighting back.
Attorneys for Yann Hufnagel have provided the University of California, Berkeley with hundreds of text messages between him and a female Cal reporter to prove they show a “mutual flirtation.” They hope to discredit the reporter’s allegations that Huffnagel repeatedly harassed her with in text messages beginning in November 2014.READ MORE: 49ers Fans Look to Make Noise, Boost Team at NFC Championship Game
Lawyers for Hufnagel said “the texts show she was actively engaged and most often the initiator of text message conversations.”
According to the San Francisco Chronicle, in December 2014, the alleged victim told Hufnagel in a text, “I clearly have to step my stalking game,” after learning he was in Las Vegas. The reporter initiated the exchange and referred to him as “my favorite assistant coach.”READ MORE: Solo Crash Friday Night Closes Moraga Road, Cuts Power to Hundreds
In another text that same month, the woman asked Hufnagel if he was celebrating “at kip’s or somewhere equally cool,” and then later, after Hufnagel affirmed that he’d been to several other bars during his time in Berkeley, she said, “Okay because otherwise we were gonna have to do an emergency dive bar tour of Berkeley.”
In January of 2015 the pair exchanged texts over a reservation at the Chez Panisse restaurant in Berkeley. When Hufnagel texted, “Chez panisse upstairs,” she responded that “[u]pstairs is for poor people.” When Hufnagel asked, “u an all downstairs girl then?” she texted, “Just kidding sorry I always forget my sense of humor may not translate and is potentially offensive,” and then sent another text immediately afterward, saying, “I’m both [an upstairs and downstairs girl].” Hufnagel then wrote that “upstairs is on me and downstairs is on you,” to which she replied, “Hahahahaaaaaaaa […] That actually made me laugh out loud”.
In March, the university served Hufnagal with a “notice of intent” to fire him. The second year assistant coach is on paid leave and relieved of his duties pending the outcome of the termination process.MORE NEWS: S.F. Supervisors Set to Designate Casa Sanchez Bldg. in Mission District a Historical Landmark
Mary McNamara, an attorney for the beleaguered coach told the San Francisco Chronicle, “The university has wronged an innocent person, and it must correct its error.”