At a pretrial hearing Thursday, a Los Angeles County judge ordered UCLA chemistry professor Patrick Harran to return to court next month regarding a lawsuit that involves the death of a UCLA lab assistant in a 2008 laboratory fire.
Harran is expected back in court on Nov. 20, said Daniel Prince, a lawyer representing Harran. His trial could begin within 90 days of that court date, Prince said.
Two years ago, Harran and the UC Board of Regents were charged with four felony counts after staff research assistant Sheharbano “Sheri” Sangji died after a chemical ignited her sweater in the campus laboratory where she worked.
Sangji was not wearing a lab coat at the time, said university officials. She died 18 days later from injuries sustained in the fire.
Harran faces charges of willfully violating occupational safety and health standards. If convicted, he could face up to four and a half years in prison.
Compiled by Yael Levin, Bruin senior staff.