HOUSTON - A former Texas A&M student filed a lawsuit against the school for male-gender bias in a sexual misconduct investigation.
The attorneys for the former student identified as John Doe said the university violated Title IX and his rights to due process in a wrongful sexual assault investigation.
John Doe was wrongfully accused of sexual misconduct in 2016 by another student and suspended for over one year and dismissed from the University’s Corps of Cadet, the complaint states. The suit also claims TAMU failed to provide a fair and unbiased investigation of the encounter resulting his right’s being violated. His attorney, Michelle Simpson Tuegel said the difference in procedures and sanctions implemented in the investigations of the accuser and the plaintiff point to a blatant male gender bias.
“The anti-male discriminatory bias in the TAMU process is a clear violation of Title IX and the Fourteenth Amendment requirement for procedural due process,” Tuegel said.
Attorney Andrew Milten who is also representing John Doe said after the accusation, the male student suffered severe depression and anxiety – which resulted in his hospitalization March 2017 and subsequent admittance to a mental facility April 2017. While the plaintiff was in the hospital, TAMU conducted the sexual misconduct and adjudication process without his participation, the complaint states.
“Yet, the administrators at TAMU-showing callous disregard for his well-being and rights to due process – moved forward with a biased hearing and presumption of guilt, providing him with no opportunity to defend himself from these false claims,” Milten said.
The plaintiff’s accuser, Jane Doe had previously been accused of sexual misconduct by a male student, according to a complaint. John Doe was removed from campus housing and extracurricular activities during the time of disciplinary process. The accuser was able to remain in her dorm and activities while claims against her were being investigated and adjudicated.
The complaint also states the adjudicator relied on prejudicial assumptions and failed to apply the appropriate evidence standard required by both the University’s policies and Title IX. At all times, John Doe was deemed guilty and the extreme, severe sanction was not warranted in light of the lack of evidence, according to the complaint.
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