Title IX charges dismissed
Last month, a federal judge dismissed the lawsuit of a USF student accused of sexual assault in 2012 and sued the university on the basis of gender discrimination and the denial of his right to due process.
Claiming the pseudonym John Doe, the student argued USF violated his due process rights because he wasn’t notified of the sexual assault charges made against him, which were in violation of the university’s code of conduct.
Doe also made a Title IX claim against USF, stating male students accused of sexual assault are found guilty despite the evidence. Title IX is a federal law prohibiting discrimination on the basis of gender in educational programs.
Doe reported to receive two separate emails from Chiqui Aldana, an administrative specialist at USF’s Student Affairs, in April 2012, both of which he deleted, as he claimed to have done with unusual or unsolicited emails.
After receiving a call and later meeting with Winston G. Jones, USF’s assistant dean and director of the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities, Doe learned he was being suspended for failing to respond to the emails. Doe then wanted his suspension lifted and called for a re-examination of his charges, which USF declined.
He also noted the accuser, his former girlfriend, had a history of violence and previously threatened to falsely accuse him of rape.
On May 29, a U.S. district judge denied Doe’s claims and dismissed his lawsuit on June 15 on the grounds that Doe couldn’t prove USF discriminated against him and that he couldn’t identify a woman accused of sexual assault who was treated more favorably.
Additionally, the judge ruled USF did not violate Doe’s right to due process since he did not exhaust his remedies, such as not participating in the appeals process.
A spokesman for USF declined to comment on the lawsuit, and Doe’s attorney did not respond to calls made by The Oracle.