OFFICE OF COMMUNITY STANDARDS AND STUDENT CONDUCT

Code of Conduct

Section IX - Student Sexual Misconduct Policy

Introduction

Wright State University strives to create a respectful, safe, and non-threatening environment for its students. When an incident of sexual misconduct is reported, the university will provide a consistent, caring, and timely response. This policy describes how the University investigates and responds to reports of student sexual misconduct. It also identifies prohibited behavior, and provides guidance and information on relevant university resources. In addition, University prevention efforts are noted. Reports involving alleged misconduct of university employees should be made with the Office of Affirmative Action Programs or Human Resources.

Wright State University urges those who believe they have been the victim of an act(s) of sexual misconduct to pursue all options available relative to resolving the matter. This includes filing a police report, a student conduct report, and other options noted below.

A student who has questions, concerns, or needs assistance relative to this policy should contact the Office of Student Support Services by calling the 24/7 on-call cell phone at (937) 260-0167; or during normal business hours call (937) 775-3749.

Policy

The university prohibits sexual misconduct, in any form, including sexual assault, sexual harassment, sexual discrimination, sexual abuse, and other forms of nonconsensual sexual conduct. Criminal, civil, and university disciplinary processes are available to a student victim and enforced against a person found to have engaged in the prohibited behavior.

The university is committed to procedures that provide fair and prompt investigation and resolution of reports of sexual misconduct. The university is equally committed to educating the university community about the importance of responding to all forms of sexual misconduct. Emphasis is placed on the rights, responsibilities, needs, and privacy of the student victim, as well as the rights of the accused. The university also adheres to all federal, state, and local requirements for intervention and crime reporting related to sexual misconduct.

Definition of Sexual Misconduct

Sexual misconduct is defined as any attempt at or any actual unwanted sexual contact, physical or nonphysical, in the absence of clear and voluntary consent. Clear and voluntary consent is consent that is given freely and actively in mutually understandable words or actions that indicate a willingness to participate in mutually agreed upon sexual activity. Consent is not clear or voluntary if it results from the use of physical force, threats, intimidation, or coercion. It is a violation of policy to have sexual contact with someone who is known to be, or should be known to be incapable of making a rational, reasonable decision.

Examples of sexual misconduct include but are not limited to:

  • Any sexual penetration however slight, with any body part or object without consent.
  • Any sexual touching with any body part or object without consent.
  • Taking non-consensual, unjust, or abusive sexual advantage of another. Examples include, but are not limited to, video or audio-taping of sexual activity without the express permission of both parties, going beyond the boundaries of consent (such as knowingly allowing another to watch otherwise consensual sexual activity without the participants knowledge) and engaging in non-consensual voyeurism
  • The exposure of the private or intimate parts of the body in a lewd manner in public or in private premises.
  • Any form of harassment, including sexual harassment or harassment based on perceived or actual identities.

Sexual harassment includes:

  • An unwanted sexual advances or request for sexual favor.
  • Sexual innuendo, suggestive comments, insults, humor and jokes about sex or gender-specific traits, sexual propositions, threats.
  • Suggestive or insulting sounds, leering, whistling, obscene gestures.
  • Physical touching: pinching, brushing the body, coerced sexual intercourse, assaul

Reporting

Wright State University takes all incidents seriously and has a responsibility to address any form of sexual misconduct that is reported. An individual may report an incident to the Office of Community Standards and/or the University Police Department. When sexual misconduct involves criminal behavior, those who feel they are victims are strongly encouraged to report incidents to the Wright State University Police Department at (937) 775-2111 or by dialing 911 from any campus telephone.

While it is the final prerogative of the reporting person to make a decision regarding his or her level of participation in any process, Wright State University strongly encourages reporting persons to make a full report in order to ensure that all resources can be made available, as well as to maintain the widest range of options through which to pursue action. Reporting persons are also encouraged to report incidents of or share information about sexual misconduct as soon as possible after the incident. Although there is no time limit on initiating a report of an incident with the university, it should be noted that the University may ultimately be unable to fully investigate and/or take disciplinary action regarding an incident where significant time has elapsed between the occurrence of the incident and the date of reporting.

How to Report an incident of Sexual Misconduct

An individual who wishes to file a report of any type of sexual misconduct involving a student is encouraged to report the incident to the Office of Community Standards and Student Conduct and/or the University Police Department. If there are any questions or concerns, the Office of Student Support Services should be contacted.

Community Standards and Student Conduct (CSSC) - If the accused is a Wright State University student, reporting persons are urged to file a written report of the incident as soon as possible. To begin the process, CSSC should be contacted by coming to the office (022 Student Union) or by calling 937-775-4240. Disciplinary action can be pursued with CSSC without pursuing criminal charges.

Once a report is filed, both the reporting person and the accused will be advised of their rights as well as resources and support that the University can provide throughout the process. Both the reporting person and the accused have the same opportunity for access to information that will be used at a disciplinary hearing. Both parties are also entitled to appeal the outcome of a case in accordance with the University's appeal process. Every effort will be made to resolve any report in a timely fashion. In most cases, complaints will be resolved within 60 days of being reported.

Wright State University Police Department - For an incident that took place on-campus, victims should contact the Wright State University Police Department directly at 775-2111 (or 9-1-1 from a campus phone) to file a police report. Wright State police officers will respond quickly upon notification of an incident. Additionally, the department has officers who are specially trained to respond to reports of sexual misconduct. Once notified, the university police department will also notify the Office of Student Support Services in order to connect the reporting person with all resources that are available.

Students who are involved in an incident that has occurred off-campus can either contact the law enforcement agency in the jurisdiction of where the incident took place by dialing 9-1-1 or they may contact the University police department and/or the Office of Student Support Services who can assist the student with filing a report with the appropriate law enforcement agency.

Process

All reports should be submitted as soon as possible after the event takes place. Once a report is filed, the following process will occur.

  1. There will be an impartial investigation conducted as quickly as possible. If a determination is made that an alleged violation of the Code of Student Conduct may have occurred, the university will initiate disciplinary proceedings against the student.
  2. Individuals who file reports will be informed of all steps the University may take to address the initial incident as well as prevent recurrence of the misconduct from taking place in the future.
  3. The accused and the reporting person are entitled to the same opportunities to have others present during a campus disciplinary proceeding as well as a right to appeal the outcome. (See Code of Conduct for a complete list of rights for both parties) Also, both the victim and the accused shall be informed in writing of the outcome of any institutional disciplinary proceeding regarding an alleged violation of the sexual misconduct policy.
  4. In all cases, any information available to the Conduct Panel or Administrative Hearing Body will be considered. A preponderance of the evidence standard will be used to determine if the student is responsible for the alleged violation or not.
  5. Every effort will be made to resolve a report in a timely fashion. In most cases, all reports will be resolved within 60 days of being reported.

False Reports

Knowingly filing a false report is cause for disciplinary and potentially criminal and civil action. Wright State University prohibits an individual from knowingly filing a false report or making misrepresentations of sexual misconduct (including sexual assault, sexual discrimination and sexual harassment). However, a report made in good faith is not considered false merely because the evidence of the allegation does not ultimately support the allegation of sexual misconduct.

Scope/Jurisdiction

This policy applies to all Wright State University students. Students are defined as "an individual who has been accepted to the University, or taking courses at Wright State University on a full or part time basis. Student status continues until an individual graduates, is academically or disciplinary separated from the university or is not in attendance for two (2) complete, consecutive terms."

Wright State University has the authority to address misconduct that takes place on University premises as well as off-campus conduct when the behavior may have or has had an adverse impact upon the University community. The jurisdiction of this policy also applies to University sponsored events, activities, trips, etc., which may occur off campus. The University, at its discretion, may pursue disciplinary action against a student while the student is also subject to criminal proceedings. The University reserves this right even if criminal charges are pending, reduced, or dismissed.

Confidentiality

The university will work to safeguard the identities and privacy of the those who report sexual misconduct or seek assistance to the extent possible and permitted by law. However, it is important that limits on confidentiality are understood.

The Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act (formerly the Campus Security Act) requires that all university officials with significant responsibility for campus and student activities report any incident of alleged sexual misconduct, including sexual assault.However, if the reporting person does not wish to be identified, a third - party report that does not include the reporting person's name must be made.

Individuals should always confirm whether confidentiality applies. Generally, confidentiality applies when services are sought from the following persons:

  • Counseling & Wellness Services counselor
  • Psychologist
  • Psychiatrist
  • Health care provider
  • Personal attorney
  • Religious/spiritual counselor

Other university employees cannot guarantee confidentiality, but will be as discreet as possible when sharing information with others. Information is disclosed to appropriate university officials who have an essential need to know in order to carry out their university responsibilities.

Wright State University must balance the needs of the individual student with its obligation to protect the safety and well-being of the university community. Therefore, based on the information contained within the report, additional action may be necessary, to include but is not limited to, summary suspension, housing relocation, class reassignment, no contact order, and campus safety alerts. It is noted that the alert will not contain any information that identifies the student victim.

Student Support

Interests of the Reporting Person - A student seeking support or advice regarding an incident of sexual misconduct should:

  • A. Contact a representative from the Office of Student Support Services by calling the 24/ 7 on-call cell phone at (937) 260-0167. The Director or designee from Student Support Services also serves as the Sexual Assault Response Team Coordinator and is available 24/7 to serve as a student advocate, to accompany the victim to the hospital, and to assist with the coordination of services. Other members of the Sexual Misconduct Response Team include representatives from Counseling & Wellness Services, Office of Residence Services, and the University Police.
  • B. If appropriate, the victim should immediately obtain medical treatment for injuries, sexually transmitted diseases, and pregnancy. A medical exam to preserve evidence of rape must be completed within 72 hours of a sexual assault.
  • C. The director of Student Support Services or designee will assist the victim in securing a safe place to live. If the student lives on campus, she/he should be offered a room reassignment or change in her/his living situation. The director of Residence Services (775-4172) and/or on-call staff will be contacted in order to identify a temporary or permanent reassignment. A reassignment request will be given highest priority.
  • The Interests of the Accused - It must be recognized that the accused in a University disciplinary investigation has certain rights as outlined within the Code of Student Conduct. A presumption of responsibility of a violation is not made as the result of any allegation(s). In the event that a student is accused of an act(s) of sexual misconduct and a report is submitted, this student will be encouraged to seek advice from either Community Standards and Student Conduct or Student Support Services.

    Both the accuser and the accused are entitled to the same opportunity for access to information that will be used at the hearing, to present relevant witnesses and other information and to have an Advisor present during the hearing.

    Confidential medical/counseling records and information regarding the reporting person's sexual history will not be provided to the accused and is not admissible at any disciplinary proceeding. Both parties have the right to appeal. (A list of complete rights can be found in the Code of Student Conduct) Counseling and/or support is also available to the accused student through the University's Counseling and Wellness Services.

    Amnesty

    The Office of Community Standards and Student Conduct will not pursue disciplinary violations against a student for the students' prohibited use of alcohol or drugs if a good faith report of an act of sexual misconduct is made.

    Retaliation

    Wright State University prohibits retaliation against an individual for filing a report of sexual misconduct, serving as a witness or otherwise being involved in a student conduct case. Acts of retaliation are, by themselves, cause for disciplinary action and potentially criminal and civil action.

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