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March 2018 Archives

The Implications of John Doe v. Miami University et. al. (2008) for the Accused, Part 3: Notice and Access to Evidence

In addition to the novel interpretations of the law laid out in Part 1 and Part 2 of this series, the Court also reaffirmed the importance of the accused's right to notice of the charges and access to the evidence in University Title IX Hearings. These rights seem so obvious and fundamental, but believe it or not the Court's affirmance of these rights is significant given past deprivations that the accused have faced.

The Implications of John Doe v. Miami University et. al. (2008) for the Accused, Part 2: Erroneous Outcome

When students and their families tell me that they "want to sue" after being found responsible for sexual assault at a University Hearing, they generally believe that the court can be used as a sort of "super appeals court" to have their hearing redecided on the merits; generally this is precisely what the courts will not do, but the recent John Doe v. Miami University decision has given some life to this use of the courts to challenge Title IX sexual assault cases (if you are not familiar with the facts of this case, see Part 1 of this series). The 6th Circuit Court of Appeals has said that if an accused can show "'(1) "facts sufficient to cast some articulable doubt on the accuracy of the outcome of the disciplinary proceeding" and (2) a "particularized . . . causal connection between the flawed outcome and gender bias,"'" then the accused can challenge the outcome in court with an "erroneous outcome" claim.

A College Student’s Guide to Interactions with the Police

Let’s face it, the college scene is fraught with temptations to either violate the law, or to be in close proximity with those who do (the classic, “wrong place, wrong time” scenario). Many of these temptations—underage drinking for example—will attract the attention of law enforcement officers (remember: underage drinking in Ohio carries with it a maximum possible sentence of 180 days in jail!). While college students have temptations, they also have constitutional rights to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures. However, the college student’s rights tend to follow the maxim of “if you don’t use them, you lose them,” meaning that if you do not know how to lawfully exercise your rights, you will probably waive them.

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