A lawsuit filed by a former Augustana University student who claimed the school unjustly expelled him following a rape accusation has been dismissed. “It was resolved to the satisfaction of the parties” lawyers said, “That is all I can say.” The school’s investigation failed to take into account that his accuser had also accused other students of sexual misconduct, including threatening a prior boyfriend with a false rape allegation. Crucially, the complaint said, Tsuruta was physically incapable of committing the rape as alleged because he had lost his feet in a motor vehicle accident.
argusleader.com By Jonathan Ellis
Court Rulings & Settlements
Police at a junior college in Wyoming have closed a sexual assault case involving a member of the University of Oregon’s 2017 Final Four basketball team, and no charges will be filed. The case came to light this summer after Bigby-Williams already announced plans to transfer to Louisiana State University from UO. “We had sex, she took a shower, came back and we were laying in bed, talking to each other,” he told police.
registerguard.com By Dylan Darling
It would seem fairly self-evident that when a college establishes procedures for handling sexual misconduct claims, it should actually follow them. That, however, was not the case in Matter of John Doe v. Skidmore College, a recently issued decision by the State of New York Supreme Court, Appellate Division. Given what it termed “multiple failures that . . . taken together, demonstrated a lack of substantial compliance” with Skidmore College’s investigatory and adjudicatory protocols, the court nullified the plaintiff’s expulsion for sexual misconduct, once again demonstrating the obvious difficulty some colleges and universities have in implementing the most elementary procedural safeguards in student-on-student sexual harassment cases.
A rape charge has been dropped against one former Lindenwood University men’s basketball player, and a second former player pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor. Asked about the dismissal and the plea, Prosecuting Attorney Tim Lohmar said, “Any time you’ve got what appears to be a credible allegation of date rape, you’ve got to take it seriously.” But Lohmar said that further investigation showed the case was “not as it first appeared.”
Before Paul Nungesser secured a handsome settlement from Columbia University, a federal district judge had slapped down his earlier Title IX lawsuit for gender discrimination. Judge Gregory Woods ruled that by assuming “sex-based discrimination” covers sex acts, Nungesser’s claim would let every person accused of sexual assault file a Title IX claim against their school. This ruling had an ominous tint for rape accusers as well, suggesting that in Woods’ court, they would have a difficult time arguing they faced sex-based discrimination from their schools because they alleged they were victims of sex acts…Now a different federal appeals court has put the same boundaries around Title IX claims as Woods, ruling against a high school student who claims she was raped at a fraternity party on a college recruiting visit.
thecollegefix.com By Greg Piper
More than two years after he sued Amherst College for declaring him a rapist because a female student sexually molested him while “blacked out,” the second-generation Asian-American plaintiff known only as “John Doe” has achieved a measure of justice. A federal judge in Boston dismissed the litigation Wednesday following a settlement that the parties brought before the court Friday.
thecollegefix.com By Greg Piper
Thankfully, a male business major can return to USC this fall. According to the student’s lawyer, Harland Braun, “There was a camera outside that captured the girl signaling to her friend that she was going to have intercourse with my client, the woman made motions with her hands that indicated sexual activity. There could never be any better evidence of there being consent.” Braun also added that “She was the aggressor.” The judge tossed out the case after the defense presented video evidence that showed consent.
A male found guilty by Cornell of sexually assaulting a female could be back on campus because a judge temporarily barred the University from suspending him. Unbelievably, Cornell also slapped a second guilty finding against John Doe. Cornell ruled that the male student accused the female student of sexual assault as “a tactical maneuver and in bad faith.” The panel said the male student, in claiming that Roe had initiated sex without his affirmative consent, had put Roe “through the proverbial wringer” and that it constituted retaliation, prohibited by Cornell policy…John Doe’s lawsuit alleges both that Cornell arbitrarily and prejudicially departed from its own policies and that Cornell’s findings of guilt are unsupported by the available evidence.
cornellsun.com By Drew Musto
The rate of allegations are far higher at elite schools. Given the disproportionate number of elite institutions in the states of the First Circuit, it should come as little surprise that the area has featured a disproportionate number of due process cases. These cases run the gamut—with one Appeals Court decision favorable to due process (Columbia) one unfavorable (Houston) and one highly unfavorable decision (Cincinnati.) The BC case could provide more clarity- and seems likely- at least based on the oral argument, to produce a victory for the accused student. The outcome from this liberal circuit could carry considerable weight… The facts of the BC case are unique: it took a year and a half for JD to prove his innocence, and the prosecutor dropped all charges. BUT the investigation at Boston College took a different course. In summary, the First Circuit seemed most concerned with the issue of breach of contract.
academicwonderland.com By KC Johnson
A jury found expelled UW-Madison student Nicholas Ralston, first arrested in 2015, not guilty of third-degree sexual assault Wednesday.