Section C: If Student Conduct Action is Started Based on a Formal Complaint

1. Initial Interview with Complainant

When receiving a formal complaint of prohibited discrimination or harassment, a Conduct Administrator designated by the Director will, if possible, conduct an initial interview with a Complainant in order to gather information relevant to Complainant’s allegations.  

At the time of the initial interview or within five (5) business days of the initial interview, Complainant should provide:

  • a list of witnesses that Complainant would like the Administrator to interview;
  • contact information for the witnesses;
  • a brief description of the relevant information Complainant anticipates the witnesses will provide;
  • suggested questions for the Administrator to ask of those witnesses; and
  • all other information that will assist the Administrator in fully investigating the allegations – documentation, records, email, photos, texts, voicemails etc.

2. Decision Whether to Initiate Conduct Action

In most cases, within three (3) business days of receiving a complaint covered by these SOPs, the Director in consultation with the Title IX Coordinator will determine:

  • Whether the complaint contains information that, if true, would violate the Student Conduct Code;
  • Whether the University has jurisdiction over the underlying allegations; and
  • Whether to initiate conduct action based on the totality of the information obtained including the Complainant’s wishes and the initial intake interview with Complainant.

If No Conduct Action is Taken:  The Director will send a notice via email to the Complainant explaining why that decision was made.

If a Decision is made to Initiate Conduct Action:  The Complainant and the Respondent will be notified, as explained below.

If the Director has made a decision to initiate conduct action, the Director will send a Notice of Allegations to the Respondent and Complainant. The Notice will include information regarding the underlying allegations, interim measures, the University’s policy prohibiting retaliation and any other relevant information.

3. Emergency Action Procedures

Upon receipt of a formal complaint of prohibited discrimination or harassment, the Director, in consultation with the Title IX Coordinator and other qualified campus community members, will determine whether emergency action procedures should be implemented. (See a visual representation of the emergency action process.

If it is determined that emergency action is required to protect the health or safety of an individual(s) on campus, the Director will follow the procedures outlined in Student Conduct Code to implement the action or actions.

Emergency action procedures may include but are not limited to emergency temporary suspensions, restrictions on a student’s presence on campus or at activities, or registration or other academic holds. In determining whether to issue an emergency action procedure, the Director or the Director’s designee can consider the following risk factors:

  • Whether the Respondent has prior convictions, is the subject of prior reports and/or complaints of any related form of prohibited conduct under the Code, or has any history of violent behavior.
  • Whether the Respondent has a history of failing to comply with any university No Contact Order or Emergency Action, other university protective measures, and/or any judicial protective order.
  • Whether the Respondent has threatened to commit violence or any form of related misconduct.
  • Whether the underlying conduct involved multiple Respondents or multiple potential complainants.
  • Whether the reported misconduct involved physical violence. “Physical violence” means exerting control over another person through the use of physical force. Examples of physical violence include hitting, punching, slapping, kicking, restraining, choking and brandishing or using any weapon.
  • Whether the report reveals a pattern of related misconduct (e.g., by the Respondent, by a particular group or organization, around a particular recurring event or activity, or at a particular location).
  • Whether the reported misconduct was facilitated through the use of “date-rape” or similar drugs or intoxicants.
  • Whether the reported misconduct occurred while the Complainant was unconscious, physically helpless or unaware that the misconduct was occurring.
  • Whether the Complainant is (or was at the time of the misconduct) a minor (under 18); and/or whether any other aggravating circumstances or signs of predatory behavior are present.

The Respondent will have an opportunity to respond within two (2) business days, as outlined in the Student Conduct Code.

Interim Measures, No Contact Directives and Confidential Options for Respondents

All students have access to interim measures and confidential resources.

No Contact Directives: Either student may request a No Contact Directive. If a No Contact Directive is issued, it shall be issued by email and it shall apply to both the Complainant and Respondent.

The Title IX Coordinator’s designees can work with various campus personnel to help students and mitigate the impact of the student conduct resolution process. This can include working with professors to move exams, grant extensions, withdraw from courses and other resolutions.

After an emergency action is initiated, or after a Notice of Allegations has been issued, a staff member with Respondent Support Services will reach out to you. You can choose to respond to them or not, and there is no obligation to utilize their services. However, this non-confidential staff member is available to help provide you with information about the resources and support that the university can provide, as well as to answer questions about the process itself.

Deputy Coordinators are available across campus to help facilitate interim measures and support for students. You can find contact information for all of these resources at Deputy Title IX Coordinators page.

Advisors

Designation of Advisor: As long as the presence of an advisor does not cause unreasonable delays, participants may have one individual advisor present throughout the Formal Process. For more information on the role of advisors and frequently asked questions, please visit the Information for Advisors page.

The University will not recognize an advisor until a participant submits an Advisor Designation Form.

Removal: If the Administrator determines that a participant’s advisor has engaged in unreasonable, disruptive, harassing or retaliatory behavior, the Administrator may allow the participant to identify a new advisor, or proceed without an advisor.

Respondents: The ASUO Office of Student Advocacy provides free and confidential legal advice and assistance to students accused of violating the Student Conduct Code:

Appointment of Administrator

The Director may designate an appropriate University representative to investigate the case, and make a decision regarding the allegations (Administrator). If a designation is made, the designee’s contact information will be set forth in the Notice of Allegations.

Request to Remove Administrator Due to Bias

If a participant believes an Administrator is biased (unable to be a neutral or impartial investigator and decision-maker) the participant may make a request for a new Administrator by submitting a request to the Director of Student Conduct. The request form can be found in the Forms and Petitions for Student SOP Process [LINK].

Requests must be submitted to the Director of Student Conduct as soon as a participant has reason to believe the designated Administrator is biased, and not less than two (2) business days prior to any scheduled meeting or conference.

Before submitting a request, participants should review the information below regarding how removal for bias requests are evaluated:

  • The fact that the Administrator investigates the allegations and also makes a final decision in the matter shall not be considered information that reflects that the Administrator is biased.
  • The fact that the Administrator has previously or is currently investigating other cases involving the same participant shall not be considered, by itself, to establish bias.
  • The fact that the Administrator has previously found the same participant responsible or not responsible in another case shall not be considered, by itself, to establish bias.
  • The University makes the determination that an Administrator or appellate officer is biased and appoints a new Administrator or appellate officer. This determination can be done with or without a participant’s request for a new Administrator.

4. A Notice of Allegations is issued to both parties at the same time.

5. Respondent Must Contact the Administrator with Seven (7) Calendar Days of the Notice of Allegations

In order to help ensure that timelines are prompt for both students, the Respondent has seven (7) CALENDAR DAYS from receipt of the Notice of Allegations to contact the Administrator to set up a meeting with the Administrator to discuss the allegations set forth in the notice. The Administrator will ask Respondent to schedule an optional meeting with the Administrator as soon as possible to learn about the Formal Process and discuss a possible resolution.

  1. If notices are sent via email, notices will be considered received on the date that they are sent.
     
  2. If notices are sent via first-class mail, they will be considered received three business days after they are sent.
     
  3. If the Respondent does not contact the Administrator within seven calendar days of receiving the Notice of Allegations, the Administrator may proceed without the participation of the Respondent.