2017-2018 Student Handbook

Page 91 of 107 Updated 1.25.17 E. Title IX Coordinator determines if there was a possible Student Handbook policy violation based on the evidence provided in the statements. F. If there is a possible policy violation, the Title IX Coordinator assigns the case to Title IX Investigators, specially trained Hardin-Simmons faculty and staff, to gather information pertinent to the case. Complainants or respondents may address potential conflicts of interest related to investigators to the Title IX Coordinator. The conflict of interest must be addressed within 48 hours of meeting with the investigators. The Title IX Coordinator will work to remedy the conflict of interest if deemed necessary. G. Both parties may have an advisor present. The advisor may be a current faculty or staff member of the university or a parent or legal guardian who was not involved in the incident. The advisor may not address the committee. The role of the advisor is to accompany the student and advise him or her privately during the investigation. H. After the preliminary investigation, Investigators develop a report and provide it to the complainant and respondent for review. The complainant and respondent then have the opportunity to provide written feedback on the report within three business days. The written feedback will be included in the findings of the Investigators. I. Title IX Investigators provide the investigation findings (responsible or not responsible) to the Title IX Coordinator. J. Title IX Coordinator submits findings to the adjudication board composed of University administrators and faculty to determine sanctions. K. Respondent receives notice of sanctions from adjudication board via the Dean of Students. L. Written notification of outcome shared with both parties (violation or no violation). M. Both parties may appeal the decision of the adjudication board to the Vice President of Student Life based on the appeal criteria set forth under the Appeals Process below: a. Insufficient information to support the decision b. New information, sufficient to alter a decision, or other relevant facts not brought out in the original hearing, because such information and/or facts were not known to the person appealing at the time of the original hearing c. Procedural irregularity that undermined the student’s ability to present a defense d. Inappropriateness of the sanction for the violation of the Code of Conduct. N. The adjudication board will endeavor to render a decision within 60 days of the complaint being filed in most cases. However, there may be extenuating circumstances that render this time-frame impractical. In such cases, decisions will be rendered as promptly as possible. For questions regarding the investigation or adjudication processes, please contact the Title IX Coordinator, Megan Baldree (megan.baldree@hsutx.edu) in writing. Individuals involved in Title IX investigations are encouraged to exercise discretion in divulging information in order to protect the integrity of the process and to avoid the appearance of retaliation. While discretion regarding the process is important, complainants and respondents are not restricted from discussing and sharing information with others who may support or assist them during the process. The university’s actions are not dependent on the initiation or outcome of criminal charges. Disciplinary proceedings may be carried out prior to, simultaneously with, or following civil or criminal proceedings. If a respondent is found responsible for sexual misconduct, the university will take steps to prevent its recurrence and correct its discriminatory effect on the complainant and others within the community, as appropriate. 22.14 Sanctions Violation of university policies for sexual misconduct may result in the imposition of one or more of the sanctions listed below. Sanctions that may be imposed are not limited to those listed. In certain limited situations, the Dean of Students may impose a sanction but suspend or postpone its actual implementation. Failure to comply