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Accused Students Have Right to Due Process

Posted by Joseph D. Lento | Feb 18, 2022 | 0 Comments

Justice for victims of sexual assault need not come at the expense of due process for the accused.

A controversial and highly publicized verdict in a 2015 sexual assault case at Stanford University raised a national outcry for holding perpetrators accountable and punishing them appropriately for their actions.

The Stanford case was not the only such instance of what many saw as a tendency for schools and courts to let perpetrators off too easily. And these cases came at a time when the #MeToo movement to publicly name alleged perpetrators was gaining new momentum in the media.

A vigilante movement was born as students began taking it upon themselves to hold students accused of sexual misconduct responsible through public naming and shaming. At Tulane University, a list called “Vigilante Justice” was circulated. Anonymous students told their stories of being assaulted and included names of the alleged assailants.

The effect of this vigilante “justice” was that students alleged to have committed sexual assault were effectively denied due process, being tried and convicted in the court of public opinion. Even when a student was ultimately found not responsible for the misconduct, their reputation was ruined.

Negative Repercussions for Those Accused

If you or your student have been accused of sexual misconduct on campus or at a school-related event, you could experience negative repercussions even during the initial stages of the school's investigation. Examples include:

  • Having your movements on campus curtailed so you won't cross paths with your accuser
  • Suspension, which could jeopardize your grades, at the very least
  • Expulsion

Having a disciplinary action on your record will impact your future in terms of applying to another school or even getting into the career field of your choice.

An Experienced Title IX Attorney Can Help

Attorney Joseph D. Lento understands what is at stake for his clients, and he and his team will fight until the very end to ensure a fair process and a favorable outcome.

You don't have to face school sexual misconduct accusations alone. Contact attorney Joseph D. Lento and the Lento Law Firm today for help at 888-535-3686.

7 Steps in the Title IX Process

Title IX mandates that every school, public or private, abide by a very specific procedure for handling allegations. Failure to do so means they will lose federal funding.

But there is some inconsistency among schools as far as how they interpret or apply the law. To make matters even more complicated, Title IX rules are adjusted fairly regularly. For example, in 2020, the option for a live hearing was added, among other changes. The basic steps in the Title IX process are as follows:

  1. Information submitted to the school's Title IX office
  2. Formal complaint signed
  3. Active investigation
  4. Evidence review and report drafting
  5. Live hearing
  6. Decision
  7. Appeal

At every stage of the process, having an experienced Title IX attorney helping you prepare will help you immensely. You need someone who knows the law inside and out, who is well versed in how universities handle this type of investigation, and who has substantial experience helping students like you.

Attorney Joseph D. Lento and the Lento Law Firm have the knowledge, years of experience, and the fighting spirit you need on your side. Contact them today at 888-535-3686.

About the Author

Joseph D. Lento

"I pride myself on having heart and driving hard to get results!" Attorney Joseph D. Lento passionately fights for the futures of his clients nationwide. Attorney Lento and his team represent students and others in disciplinary cases and various other proceedings at colleges and universities across the United States. Attorney Lento has helped countless students, professors, and others in academia at more than a thousand colleges and universities across the United States, and when necessary, he and his team have sought justice on behalf of clients in courts across the nation. He does not settle for the easiest outcome, and instead prioritizes his clients' needs and well-being. Joseph D. Lento is licensed in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and New York, is admitted pro hac vice as needed nationwide, and he can help you or your student address any school-related issue or concern anywhere in the United States.

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If you, or your student, are facing any kind of disciplinary action, or other negative academic sanction, and are having feelings of uncertainty and anxiety for what the future may hold, contact the Lento Law Firm today, and let us help secure your academic career.

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