Campus Safety and Security

Sexual OFFENSE Hearing Board

The University recognizes that cases that involve alleged violations of sexual offense are some of the most challenging and confidential hearings to resolve. As such, the University has formed a hearing Board that will hear cases that allege a violation of Sexual Harassment, Sexual Assault, Sexual Misconduct, Relationship Violence (domestic violence and dating violence), Sexual Exploitation and Stalking. The Sexual Offense Hearing Board is comprised of a chair, as well as three nonstudent members of the campus community (faculty, staff, administrators) who have been trained to understand the complexities and legal implications associated with these specific policy violations.
The Sexual Offense Hearing Board invokes an evidentiary standard of “preponderance of the evidence” when determining whether a violation has occurred.

Procedure

  1. The Deputy Title IX Coordinator will submit their investigative report (including any evidence gathered) and recommendation to convene the Sexual Offense Hearing Board to the Hearing Board Chair or designee.
  2. The Chair will convene the board and determine a date and time for the hearing at which time both the complainant and the respondent will be informed of the hearing date, hearing time, and will receive an optional invitation to participate in the proceedings.
  3. Both the complainant and the respondent will be provided with independent dates and times to review the Investigative Report by the Board Chair.
  4. All board members will be provided with a date and time to review the Investigative Report by the Board Chair.
  5. The Board will convene and proceed with the following process:
    1. The Hearing Board Chair will provide instructions on the Hearing Board proceedings.
    2. The Hearing Board will call the Deputy Title IX Coordinator for questioning.

      Any combination of the following options may then occur:

      1. The Board will request to directly interview witnesses
      2. The Board will request that the Deputy Title IX Coordinator re-interview the respondent and/or the complainant
      3. If voluntary participation is agreed to by the complainant and/or respondent, the Board will call the complainant and/or respondent to provide statement(s) and be questioned.

  6. All information shared at the hearing is recorded; the digital recording will not be available as a part of any participant’s educational or judicial record. Note that the Board’s deliberation will not be recorded.
  7. During the hearing, only the complainant, the respondent, Board Chair, Board members, approved witnesses, and advisers may be present. Witnesses shall only be present when sharing information with the Board, except at the discretion of the Chair.
  8. The Sexual Offense Hearing Board may require the cooperation of any member of the Clark community in providing information during the hearing. No member of the University staff with whom the complainant or the respondent has entered into a confidential relationship can share information arising from the role without the permission of the complainant or the respondent. All members of the Sexual Offense Hearing Board are bound by confidentiality, no other accommodations for confidentiality can be guaranteed.
  9. If the hearing board determines that witnesses should be interviewed directly by the board, the board chair will request their presence at least 24 hours in advance.  Both the complainant and the respondent will be informed of any witnesses being called to the hearing board.  Witnesses will only be permitted to answer questions from the hearing board.  Witnesses are not permitted to ask questions of the board or provide rhetoric not responsive to the questions asked.
  10. If at any time during the hearing, a question or response is deemed inappropriate or irrelevant to these proceedings, the Chair will interject and ask that either a participant not respond to the question that was asked or ask that the response given be excluded from the formal proceedings.
  11. If a complainant and/or respondent chooses to participate in the hearing board process, questions should be directed to the Chair. The Chair will then ask the question and solicit a response. At no time should the complainant or respondent address questions directly to one another.
  12. The Chair may remove any individual who impedes the hearing process. The Chair will act to promote a civil and respectful proceeding.
  13. At any point in time, either the participants or members of the Board may request a short recess. The Chair will determine whether to grant that request and for how long the Board will recess. If a recess is granted, the hearing will begin at the announced time without delay.
  14. Following the completion of the hearing, the Board members shall decide by majority vote whether the respondent was responsible for the violations(s) of the Code of Student Conduct. If the decision is affirmative, the Board members will, by a separate vote and in consultation with the Title IX Coordinator, determine the sanction, if one is deemed appropriate. The Hearing Board Chair will be responsible for communicating the Board’s decision and any accompanying sanction so both the respondent and the complainant.
  15. The seriousness of Sexual Offenses is a major concern and the University does not want any of the circumstances (e.g., drug or alcohol use) to inhibit the reporting of Sexual Offenses. If, in the course of a hearing, information arises indicating a possible violation of another provision of the Code of Student Conduct, the University reserves the right to pursue that in a separate hearing process.
  16. At the conclusion of the hearing, the Chair will simultaneously deliver the Sexual Offense Hearing Board’s decision and imposed sanction(s) to the complainant and respondent via campus email, in the name of the University
  17. Both the complainant and the respondent will have the right to appeal any decision made by a hearing Board on the following grounds:
    a. New information, which was not available in the original hearing, is being introduced.
    b. Material failure to follow standard procedures as outlined in the Code of Student Conduct.
  18. Dissatisfaction with the judicial decision or sanction is not grounds for an appeal.
  19. A Deputy Title IX Coordinator, their designee, or an ad hoc committee will review appeals submitted.  In cases where new information is introduced or a failure to follow standard procedures is found to be true, the Deputy Title IX Coordinator may refer the case back to the Sexual Offense Hearing Board.
  20. In order to request a review, the respondent or complainant must email the Business Manager or their designee a written request and the reasons on which the appeal is based within three (3) business days after receipt of the Board’s decision.
  21. The Deputy Title IX Coordinator or their designee shall have access to the case file when a review has been requested.
  22. The Deputy Title IX Coordinator or their designee may, at their discretion, meet with the respondent and complainant. They shall have the sole discretion in accepting or rejecting a case for review based on the grounds for appeal stated above, obtaining additional information relative to the case, and upholding, reversing, or amending the sanction or decision of the Board.
  23. While the decision of the Deputy Title IX Coordinator or their designee will be considered to be final, the President of the University reserves the right to amend or alter all administrative and judicial decisions of the University.