Court wins, settlement agreements, positive legislation
AMHERST JUDGE: Male student expelled for sexual assault may have been victim himself
CALIFORNIA JUDGE: Disparity in campus tribunal ‘enough to shock the Court’s conscience’
CORNELL: Caused ‘actual harm’ to student accused of sexual assault
COLORADO STATE UNIVERSITY PUEBLO: School’s sexual assault proceeding suggests ‘bias and inaccuracy’
OHIO JUDGE: Accused students have right to cross-examination
watchdog By Ashe Schow
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)
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.
“Procedures that most colleges and universities use in sexual assault cases are so structurally unfair to accused students- it calls into question the schools’ commitment to pursuing the truth.” “The lower threshold as articulated in guidance in 2011 by the Office for Civil Rights provides the foundation for a likely outcome of responsibility”… “It’s not about finding the truth, or administering justice. The purpose of the guidance is to make it more likely that accused students are found responsible, whether or not they have done anything wrong.” Excerpts from ‘The Campus Rape Frenzy: Attack on Due Process at American Universities’
washingtonpost.com By Johnson and Taylor
Earlier, I wrote about how the Trump administration should end the Obama-era micromanagement of college discipline by the Dept. of Ed. But I overlooked one form of federal meddling that needs to be fixed…that colleges not allow students or faculty accused of sexual harassment to appeal findings of guilt unless they also allowed complainants to appeal not-guilty findings -a position that some critics viewed as akin to double jeopardy. This demand ignored OCR’s own past agency rulings to the contrary, even though “unexplained departures from precedent” violate the Administrative Procedure Act, and are arbitrary and capricious.
libertyunyielding.com By Hans Bader
A judge has ruled that Cornell acted in an “arbitrary and capricious” manner by refusing to follow its own anti-discrimination policy, which caused the male accused student “actual harm.” Even though both students’ claims should have been investigated per Cornell policy, only Jane’s was looked into. John alleged in his complaint against Cornell that the investigator looking into Jane’s claims showed a clear bias against him. For example, the investigator asked “misleading, prejudicial and slanted questions only of John Doe,” and refused to require Jane and her witnesses to preserve and produce text messages that could have helped John’s complaint against Jane.
watchdog.org By Ashe Schow
Judge Orlando Hudson issued a ruling on a preliminary injunction allowing a suspended men’s soccer player to remain at Duke. “He selected Duke,” argued his attorney “When he came to Duke after doing that research and deciding on Duke, he agreed that he would play soccer for them and live by their rules. And Duke has to live by the rules too.” Judge Hudson responds: “I also agree that he has established and carried his proof on his claims that his hearings were fundamentally unfair, the mandatory injunction will be allowed.”
dukechronicle.com By Frances Beroset
The U.S. legal system operates on the theory that the accused is innocent until proven guilty. But Stuart Taylor argues that, when it comes to sexual assault allegations, college campuses are turning the American justice system on its ear and declaring young men guilty based on accusations alone.
What do campuses say is sexual assault? 2:26
What if the man and the woman are both intoxicated? 6:08
“Pressure from government to hand down guilty verdicts” 7:08
What happens if you question the campus orthodoxy? 8:35
“What we oppose is presumption of guilt” 10:52
“There is no rape culture” 11:51
“Campus rape activists do not take rape statistics seriously” 14:55
“What is it like to be falsely accused?” 15:32
Activists admit that their methods don’t work 19:22
“Activists say it’s better to presume guilt” 19:59
How does the media deal with campus rape claims? 24:01
Mattress girl 27:12
What happened to due process? 28:17
The roots of campus rape hysteria 33:21
“Is there a way out of the false campus rape narrative?” 35:21