According to the complaint, Ungerleider became angry after Spanish professor Ruth Borgman gave him an unfairly low grade on a final project and called her a bitch in front of his class during the final exam. He emailed Senior Associate Dean of Academic Affairs Hazel May to say he was sorry and explain that he was being unfairly graded, but she told him to see a psychologist, it says.
The complaint says that May directed Stephanie Nixon, then the director of residential programs, to visit Ungerleider’s Wien dorm room. She did so at 12:30 in the morning, accompanied by campus security officers, who unlocked the door. When Ungerleider resisted, Nixon called the New York Police Department, and three officers handcuffed Ungerleider and escorted him to the hospital.
When he arrived at St. Luke’s, Ungerleider was interviewed by a series of psychiatrists, and he refused to answer their questions, the complaint says. When he tried to leave, three doctors tackled him and forcibly injected him with the drug Haldol.
The lawsuit says that Dr. Tara Malekshahi met with Ungerleider and described him as having “grandiose and paranoid delusions” and an illogical and incoherent thought process. Malekshahi and other doctors medicated him against his will and kept him in containment, it says.
Although he asked to leave repeatedly over the course of his month-long hospitalization, he claims, Ungerleider was not allowed to. His twin brother, also a Columbia student, tried to check Oren out of the hospital, but doctors would not release him.
Ungerleider eventually requested a court date to challenge his hospitalization, but the appearance did not result in his release. Instead, he remained at St. Luke’s until doctors released him on Jan. 21, 2011, the complaint says.
"Psychiatric expert testimony: mendacity masquerading as medicine."- Thomas Szasz