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Judge says sorority sister and dog can stay in Chi Omega house until trial

Ohio State Chi Omega sorority house on Indianola Ave. Credit: Jack Westerheide | Photo Editor

Madeleine Entine and her therapy dog can stay in the Chi Omega sorority house for now, a federal judge ruled Friday morning.

By issuing a preliminary injunction, U.S. District Judge Algenon Marbley allows Entine to continue living in the house until the dispute goes to trial.

Entine, a second-year in psychology, filed a temporary restraining order against Ohio State last week after the university ruled Entine couldn’t keep living in the Chi Omega house with her therapy dog, Cory, because it caused another resident’s allergies to flare up, which led to that resident’s Crohn’s disease being aggravated.

The dispute between Entine, who has Cory to help alleviate her anxiety, and Carly Goldman, a second-year in marketing, hinges on the Americans with Disabilities Act. Both students are covered under the ADA.

Entine’s lawsuit was filed against L. Scott Lissner, Ohio State’s ADA coordinator, not Goldman.

According to court documents, Marbley said it isn’t clear whether Goldman actually asked for an accommodation for her allergies under the ADA.

“It is certain, however, that Lissner did not perform the inquiry required under the ADA before disallowing the use of a service animal,” Marbley wrote. “In fact, Lissner did not even establish that it was Cory who aggravated the symptoms of Goldman’s disability.”  

After both students declined alternative housing options that Ohio State provided, the university said Goldman could stay in the house because she signed the lease first. Entine filed the temporary restraining order in response.

The injunction issued Friday pauses Ohio State’s decision while the case progresses.

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