Drake University in Iowa has fired a trustee board member after expelling his disabled son, who alleged he was the victim of a rape by a female student. Both students filed complaints, but only the male was investigated. The son’s lawsuit alleges that both he and the female were intoxicated, and she initiated oral sex on him. It added that he wasn’t “in a state to be with her” and “not able to give consent that night.” Trustee Tom Rossley, who had been on Drake’s board for 23 years, accused the college of failing to accommodate his son’s “ADHD, anxiety, and language-based learning disabilities” and claimed that the female said “on the record” during a hearing that she indeed has initiated sex without the son’s consent. Rossley was told to stop complaining about the process and eventually was asked to step down from his position.
heatst By Lukas Mikelionis
Of all the campus cases since the Dear Colleague letter, the Amherst case is the worst. This case featured a student (JD) who not only could use his accuser’s own words to prove his innocence, but could demonstrate from the college’s own findings that he was, plausibly, a sexual assault victim—and yet the college culminated a biased process by expressing disinterest in his evidence. If Amherst could get this lawsuit dismissed, it would be hard to imagine any set of facts in which an accused student could be certain of prevailing. On Tuesday, however, Judge Mark Mastroianni, an Obama appointee, allowed the lawsuit to proceed. There’s little reason to believe that Mastroianni was eager to make this decision. This is a judge who didn’t appear ideologically inclined to side with the accused student. (In a case at UMass, he sided with the university, despite ample grounds for doubting UMass’ fairness)
Farrer didn’t want to have sex with her. He had been taught in his ROTC program that “drunk people aren’t supposed to sleep together,” and while he didn’t think either was drunk, he wanted to play it safe. Zerfoss, “seemed fully cognizant,” she wasn’t slurring her words or fumbling, and she was insistent that they have sex. “She kept calling my name,” grabbing his hands and putting them on her body. When Farrer tried to spurn her advances by making small talk she rejected. “Eventually, I gave in.” The following week, Farrer was told that a female student had filed a sexual-assault allegation against him with the Title IX office. In spite of a police investigation that found “inconclusive evidence” and numerous inconsistencies in his accuser’s story, Farrer was still ruled responsible for sexual assault and expelled by Indiana University-Bloomington. “If you’re a male and you’re accused, you’re guilty until proven innocent,” Farrer said.
thecollegefix By Toni Airaksinen
No matter who Trump nominates, the key task for the next OCR head to do is to reverse its intrusion into campus discipline procedures for students accused of sexual assault. The toxic effects of that intrusion are the subject of a recent book by Johnson and Taylor. In The Campus Rape Frenzy: The Attack on Due Process at America’s Universities, the authors give a detailed account of the damage wrought by OCR’s “guidance” to colleges. One of the most startling points the authors make is that the use of OCR methods actually undermines an important element of the justice system—Miranda rights. That is because OCR encourages schools to share evidence they’ve obtained without the presence of an attorney with the police, who can then use it if they press charges. “The major effect of this policy,” write the authors, is “an end-run around the accused’s constitutional right not to be subjected to custodial questioning by police without lawyers.”
jamesgmartin.center By George Leef
Barbara Snyder, President of Case Western Reserve University is being sued along with The Board of Trustees, and staff for not following the University’s own disciplinary guidelines, for male discrimination and for refusing John Doe to review witness testimony prior to his disciplinary hearing. “Without receiving a notice of investigation, a discussion of his rights and responsibilities or the CWRU policies and procedures, and without an advisor or support person to accompany him, John Doe was blindsided when he arrived to attend a mandatory meeting with the CWRU Title IX investigator,” Doe says from the outset, he was presumed guilty. Case Western Reserve University suspended him for three years and kicked him out of his dorm based on false allegations of sexual assault with his then-girlfriend that were not supported by factual evidence.
courthousenews By Kevin Koeninger
Since 2012, Yale must document all sexual assault allegations on campus. Yale deputy provost Stephanie Spangler prepared this years report and it provides a peak into the deeply unhealthy atmosphere regarding the investigation and adjudication of sexual assault complaints. Her report portrays a campus in the midst of a terrifying wave of violent crime- or more likely in the midst of a moral panic. Spangler is giddly that there were 81 reports of some type of sexual harassment at Yale in the last six months of 2016…Her report has many insights. One is that a disturbing pattern is emerging where the Title IX coordinators and not the accusers are filing sexual assault complaints against Yale undergraduate students.
mindingthecampus By KC Johnson
This is a terribly tragic story of discrimination and what bystander intervention really looks like. A TIX sexual assault complaint was filed by a nosy 3rd party female…Doe attempted to put an end to the matter at once: Grant Neal (the accused) recorded her making the definitive statement, “I’m fine and I wasn’t raped” to university officials. But no one cared. In the eyes of the university, it was not Doe’s place to determine whether she was a victim of sexual assault—that was the investigators job. The man in charge of investigating whether Grant Neal had raped Doe first told Neal to open emails from Doe his girlfriend, and then later told him he could be disciplined for opening them. “That’s when I immediately knew,” said Neal. “That’s when I really knew that the situation was above my control.”.. After denying Neal any meaningful way to demonstrate his innocence, CSU-Pueblo effectively ended his career, cancelling out his scholarships and opportunities to play football and pursue a wrestling career. Read Mr. Neal’s interview below.
reason By Robby Soave
A lawsuit against Williams was delayed until the accused student exhausted his appeals at the college.The result is an amended complaint which raises four new areas of concern with how Williams handled this case: (1) Credibility issues don’t matter, at least when the accuser’s credibility is in question. (2) Playing fast and loose with sexual assault definitions. (3) Limiting information. (4) Reports from a Williams whistleblower don’t inspire confidence.
Georgia state representative Earl Ehrhart has won committee approval for legislation that would remove the adjudication of felony sexual assault from campus administrators and return it to law enforcement. Ehrhart’s bill HB51 would go a long way toward establishing a system that could produce real justice. watchdog By Ashe Schow
Here’s a video of the bill’s discussion. SOS is very grateful to Attorney Charles Jones for supporting HB51 and for speaking out (in the midst of jeers) on behalf of the falsely accused who must remain silent due to college settlement agreements.
San Diego State University violated “procedural fairness” by refusing to let a student accused of rape have an advocate “with the same or substantially similar skills, training and experience” as his accuser’s advocate, ruled California Judge Wohlfeil. Wohlfeil also denounced the university’s “well-intentioned, but deeply flawed, administrative system to investigate and review complaints of student misconduct,” which stacks the deck against accused students. “The disparity of these circumstances is enough to shock the Court’s conscience,” the judge wrote.