Contact a lawyer with experience in all three of these areas: (1) defending against campus sexual assault allegation in university disciplinary proceedings; (2) Title IX accommodation procedures; (3) defending against criminal charges of sexual assault brought by the local police and prosecutors. Being accused of a campus sexual assault may subject you to university conduct code charges, Title IX proceedings as well as criminal proceedings so you’ll need the advice of an attorney who can handle all three matters simultaneously.
(1) Defending against campus sexual assault allegation in university disciplinary proceedings: Colleges and universities are under enormous pressure to respond quickly and authoritatively to any allegations of campus sexual assaults. Any perceived failure by the schools may result in investigations by the United States Department of Education, the United States Department of Justice, law suits against the college or university filed by campus sexual assault victims, as well as lawsuits filed by those accused of campus sexual assaults. Pending federal and state legislation about campus sexual assaults continue to add further pressure and complexity to the issues as colleges and universities struggle to revise existing procedures and implement new procedures as quickly as they can.
Confusion over how to respond and defend against campus sexual investigations often make a student feel like they have “tried & convicted” without any due process. Often the student and their families wait too long to seek experienced legal help and often have trouble finding lawyers who understand and have experience at defending against campus sexual assaults. Speed is important to the universities and speed is even more critical for you if you have been accused. There is only small window of time to prepare yourself and your defense and waiting to start can mean that critical parts of the process are completed by the university before you have a chance to mount a defense. All too often, we are not contacted until after a student has already been interviewed by campus investigators or even already found responsible and suspended or expelled from their college.
(2) Title IX accommodation procedures: Title IX processes are entirely separate from conduct code violation procedures and may be implemented immediately. These can range from stay away and no contact orders banning you from being in touch with the student who has accused you to even greater restrictions, including being forced to move out of your housing and even being barred from campus and suspended before any formal conduct code violation charges have been brought. These actions can happen almost contemporaneously with your learning about being accused so it is crucial that you seek legal advice from a lawyer experienced with Title IX procedures immediately.
(3) Criminal Charges: Every campus sexual assault allegation carries with it the potential of criminal charges, prosecution, conviction, registration as a sexual offender and jail. Often an accused student may face both university conduct code violation proceedings and criminal investigation and charges simultaneously. In other situation, one or the other may come first and the defense of one must be done by an experienced campus sexual assault lawyer who understands how both systems work.