Posted on September 20, 2004

Woman to Seek Testing for Staging Crime

AP, Sept. 18

A college professor convicted of staging a hate crime by spray-painting her own car with racist slurs was ordered to undergo 90 days of psychological testing at a state prison.

Pomona Superior Court Judge Charles Horan on Friday delayed Kerri Dunn’s sentencing, but called her a “bald-faced liar.”

“It’s clear in this case what occurred,” Horan told Dunn and her attorneys Friday. “Your client vandalized her own car and reported it as a hate crime.”

Dunn, 39, of Redlands, was convicted of a misdemeanor count of filing a false police report and two felony counts of attempted insurance fraud. She could face up to 3 1/2 years in prison when she returns for sentencing on Dec. 15.

The Claremont McKenna College psychology professor reported the racist and anti-Semitic slurs on her car on March 9, prompting college officials to cancel classes the next day as thousands of students took part in demonstrations calling for tolerance.

Dunn became a suspect after two witnesses reported seeing her vandalizing her car.

Both Dunn’s attorneys and prosecutors welcomed the judge’s decision to seek a psychological evaluation.

“This may help us determine if this is some fluke that is never going to be repeated or if it is something that needs to be handled in a more serious fashion,” Deputy District Attorney Martin Bean said.