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MSU professor on leave after criminal past discovered

Posted at 4:11 PM, Oct 04, 2023
and last updated 2023-10-12 19:27:35-04

EAST LANSING, Mich. — Student sleuths in a Michigan State University class say they discovered their professor's checkered past.

The university says nothing of the sort showed up on a background check.

MSU professor on leave after criminal past discovered

FOX 17 spoke to one of Brendan Doyle's former students on Wednesday about the discovery.

Brendan Doyle was charged back in 2020 for allegedly helping run a meth lab.

The arrest happened in Louisiana.

This fall, Doyle started teaching at MSU.

Doyle appeared in a press release from a Louisiana sheriff's office in May 2020.

He was charged with the creation or operation of a clandestine laboratory for the unlawful manufacture of a controlled dangerous substance.

It's the same man who was teaching Mackenzie Allbee's class at MSU in fall 2023.

“When I joined the GroupMe for homework help, I saw that there was an article about him. It had the picture of my professor,” Mackenzie Allbee said.

The picture was a mugshot of Doyle from when he was allegedly caught up in a meth-manufacturing scheme more than a thousand miles away.

Doyle taught kinesiology and an anatomy and physiology class.

“He was erratic and he just seemed, like, impatient," Allbee said.

Doyle also had choice words for students, according to Allbee.

“When he yelled at us as if we were a high school class for talking, I just thought it was kind of unnecessary; like, when that happens in other classes at MSU, the professors don’t really make a big deal out of it; they just keep teaching the lecture. It was more distracting when he yelled at us than the actual talking,” Allbee said.

Students say it was them who discovered Doyle's past. The university communications person tells FOX 17 nothing came up during a routine background check when Doyle was hired.

“Just mainly shock and confusion as to how he was even hired by the university,” Allbee said.

Doyle is no longer teaching Allbee's class. He's been placed on leave. In an email obtained by FOX 17, the head of the Kinesiology Department apologized to students, claiming they were made aware of Doyle's past in August before school started.

“Even if his involvement was minimal, how did this happen? How did they look past it, or not know at all?” Allbee said.

FOX 17 was able to confirm Doyle pleaded guilty to the sole count in January of 2021. He was sentenced to 180 days, but served 90.

The class Doyle used to teach has a temporary professor.

Allbee says she's not sure when they'll get a permanent replacement.

MSU spokesperson Dan Olsen told FOX 17, "I can confirm [Doyle] is not an employee as of Oct. 9."

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