July 3rd, 2012 | University

Eli fined for taking friend’s exam in Ireland

Cross country runner Conor Dooney '12, right, seen competing at the Giegengack Invitational in 2010, was fined Tuesday for taking a friend's exam in his native Ireland.
Cross country runner Conor Dooney '12, right, seen competing at the Giegengack Invitational in 2010, was fined Tuesday for taking a friend's exam in his native Ireland. Photo by James Lu.

An Irish Yalie was fined €200 on Tuesday for taking his friend’s physics final examination in the Irish secondary school system.

Conor Dooney ’12, a former member of Yale’s cross country team, and his friend Stephen Boucher pleaded guilty in Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to charges of impersonating each other during a Leaving Certificate examinations in 2008, the Irish Independent reported. Irish police recommended that they be charged with forgery after Ireland’s Department of Education referred the case to them.

Though the pair faced a maximum penalty of a two-year jail term or a €5,000 fine, Judge Desmond Hogan fined both men €200 and said he felt “a custodial sentence would be disproportionate.”

“They were very stupid but that is the height of it,” Hogan said, adding that he did not want a conviction to hamper either defendant’s future careers.

Dooney and Boucher were caught after their physics teacher heard rumors that they had sat each other’s exam, and noted that Dooney got a C for his English paper — far below the A grade she expected of him, the Independent reported. Charges were filed against both men in June 2011.

Boucher said he asked Dooney to sit his exam because he wanted the extra points in hopes of being admitted to a marketing program at the Dublin Institute of Technology, the Independent reported. Boucher later took the exam himself and scored 20 points higher than he needed for admission.