Gender and the Law Prof Blog

Editor: Tracy A. Thomas
University of Akron School of Law

Monday, June 9, 2014

Challenge to Sexual Misconduct Cases

From the Chicago Tribune:  

Peter Yu, Drew Sterrett and Lewis McLeod were headed toward bright futures at prestigious colleges and universities when each got involved in one-night sexual encounters.

All three young men claimed the encounters were consensual — but the women asserted otherwise. In each case, campus officials found the men responsible for sexual assault and expelled or suspended them.


...all three are pushing back, suing the schools on charges that their rights to a fair hearing were violated.


The three young men are suing Vassar College, the University of Michigan and Duke University, respectively; students who were suspended or expelled for sexual assault have also filed actions against Occidental College, Columbia University, Xavier University, Swarthmore College, Delaware State University and a host of other campuses.

Most are arguing that the college hearing process is unfair. In a new twist, some young men also are asserting that the college discipline process is skewed against them because of their gender, violating the 1972 Title IX law, which bans sex discrimination by schools receiving federal funds.


Some critics argue that students should have the right to an attorney and to directly question their accusers — protections not granted on all campuses.

They also expressed concerns about the federal government's 2011 directive to apply a lower burden of proof — "preponderance of evidence" — in these sexual misconduct hearings, instead of the higher standard of "clear and convincing evidence" that some campuses had been using.

Education, Violence Against Women | Permalink


All probably true and damning enough, but if we scroll down:
"In court filings, Yu claims the encounter was consensual and that Vassar ignored evidence, such as the female student's friendly Facebook messages saying she had 'a wonderful time' and was 'really sorry' she led him on."

Ridiculous, but par for the course, I guess. Then, this:
"In addition, Yu contends in the court filing that the university refused his request to have a student on the hearing panel, which was made up of three colleagues of the victim's father, a Vassar professor."

Seems a little beyond the pale. But, Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live...

Posted by: Think Like a 1L | Jun 9, 2014 6:20:56 PM

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