I reported a sexual assault to a public college that I was a student of and the perpetrator was also a student of. The Title IX coordinator only met with me once, did not call any of the witnesses I asked her to call, disclosed confidential information about where I live to a third party for which I did not give permission for, asked if I was on "anti-psychotic" drugs, and closed the case. There was NO three person panel review for this case, I wasn't aware of half the things she was doing and at the same time, the guy I filed against created a stalking claim against me with huge fabrications and fake emails. On the basis of these fake emails he would present, she took away my access to campus with NO evidence whatsoever. I don't know to whom I can appeal to that is higher than her. I looked at Office of Civil Rights but I don't know what to categorize this offense as. She accuses me of doing things with no evidence and then makes judgments like taking away my ID on them, she is clearly biased and I don't know what institution I can complain to.

  • Please note that the coordinator may feel that she does have evidence. So saying that she's done X or Y without evidence isn't true. It's your contention that the evidence is fabricated. This is where a lawyer could be very useful in your further dealings with the university. – mkennedy Aug 7 '17 at 2:40
  • I agree, thanks. But she first accuses me of sending emails, then takes away my access to the school, THEN asks me whether or not I've sent the emails. Doesn't that show that she didn't have evidence in the first place? – user8358234 Aug 7 '17 at 15:41

Setting aside the fact that sexual assault is a crime which would be prosecuted by the state, there is legal room for a person to sue the university under Title IX. One ground would be if the university knowingly recruited and protected or failed to supervise a person known to have sexually harassed other students (Williams v. Georgia, 477 F.3d 1282). The university would have to have actual or constructive knowledge of the harassment, and the basis for the suit would be that the university failed in a duty to create a harassment-free environment. Thus if a student sexually assaulted another at Antioch University (extremely vigorous in eliminating sexual discrimination), they probably would not be liable.

A single assault can serve as a predicate for a Title IX suit (Roe v. U. Washington). In that case, the assailant was a member of the football team and the victim was associated with the team. Staff learned of the assault, and made various suggestions about keeping quiet, not embarrassing the team, watch out the other guys on the team will harass you and so on; the team supervisers offered the victim counseling, and the university conducted no investigation of the truth of the accusation. Ultimately they suggested mediation between the assailant and victim (and suggested nothing else), which resulted in a recommendation of counseling and community service for the assailant. And so on. The university's violation of Title IX came not from the fact of their having been a sexual assault, but from their response to it. New York state has additional laws requiring more vigorous responses on the part of the university (as do a number of other states).

One remedy is to file a complain with the Dept. of Education's Office for Civil Rights. Alternatively, a victim can directly sue the institution.

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  • Thank you! Would I need an attorney for the complaint with the Office of Civil Rights? – user8358234 Aug 5 '17 at 16:29
  • Not necessarily, but if the complaint is incoherent (no offense intended), it might not do as well. Specialized advice beyond what can be given at LSE would be wise, i.e. an attorney or at least an organization that knows how to navigate the form: www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/complaintform.pdf – user6726 Aug 5 '17 at 17:23

If you decide to file a complaint with the Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights, you can consult this guidance document, which explains what a school must do when a student reports a sexual assault and what would constitute a Title IX violation. https://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/docs/qa-201404-title-ix.pdf

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