What is Retaliation and Why Accused Students May Retaliate?
Retaliation is the act of taking action to harm someone else because they have inflicted harm upon you. It is wrong, and when it comes to sexual misconduct cases, it can significantly impede the efforts made towards finding justice, punishing those who deserve it, discouraging any future occurrences of sexual misconduct, and preventing the spread of these detrimental behaviors. A college student may retaliate against a complainant who accuses them of sexual misconduct in various ways like violence (slaps, shoves or beatings), threats, warnings, or suggestions of violence; sexual assault or harassment; removing personal effects from shared housing arrangements; theft, conversion, damage or defacement personal property; interfering with online access such as locking out of resources or groups; slanderous posts that disparage someone’s reputation.
Students will sometimes retaliate when falsely accused because they feel wronged by the lies made about them. False accusations often cause serious harm to students’ reputations and their physical well-being. In other instances where the complaint may be legitimate and justified report about sexual improprieties made in good faith by responsible parties, retaliation may happen as a way of deterring such allegations from coming up again or dissuading future complaints.
The adverse impact that retaliation has on addressing cases of sexual assault cannot be understated. Retaliating against those who report campus sexual assaults sends a strong message to others that they should not report abuse or its aftermath. Anyone filing reports on incidences that relate to campus sexual assaults needs protection not just for themselves but also for anyone else involved in an investigation. Title IX sexual misconduct policies must prohibit retaliation by federal regulation but nondiscrimination based on gender policies also provide avenues individuals facing harassment can use.
How Schools Treat Sexual Misconduct
Colleges and universities have strict policies regarding how to deal with cases involving problematic behavior between students who attend their institutions. Whatever the situation, institutions prohibit retaliation. For example, The University of Arizona’s Student Code prohibits certain types of sexual harassment, including harassment outside Title IX, and specifically states that its code bars all acts of retaliation. The code extends the scope to include tampering with physical evidence or inducing people to provide false information.
Apart from protecting those who report sexual assaults against further harm or victimization by people who may have been accused falsely but retaliate regardless, institutions also provide protection for anyone named as witnesses in sexual misconduct cases. Kansas has a comprehensive policy that covers complaints enforcing their recommendations on sexual offenses. All parties directly involved in investigation or reporting issues must be informed regarding anti-retaliation provisions stipulated under campus rules concerning academic integrity breaches.
What Happens If I Retaliate?
Various consequences can arise from retaliating against somebody who files a claim or participates in the investigation of any sexual misconduct case. Retaliating while innocent may lead to even more serious sanctions by an institution when someone retaliates despite there being no proof of wrongdoings despite the charges brought against them.
Retaliation is seen as violating school policy and can lead to different sanctions in severe cases like suspension or expulsion.
What Can You Do Instead of Retaliating?
There are legal avenues for those facing false charges on campus but remember the crucial role schools play in dealing correctly with claims brought forward. Austin attorneys argue that filing false reports go beyond breaking Texas penal laws by infringing policies established by schools and universities throughout the state. Students can bring counterclaims against individuals making absurd allegations about them and hold them accountable through utilizing appropriate procedures provided for such situations by these institutions.
Innocence should not warrant any retaliation leading students to behave unethically towards false accusers’ unfortunate incidents who might have other reasons for manufacturing reports about campus sexual assault cases. Ensure you’ve sought sound legal advice before acting upon such scenarios since even innocent accused students must avoid any behavior that might be construed as retaliation.
Retaliation is never the right course of action. It complicates situations for all parties involved, creating more problems and solutions leading to inappropriate relationships in the future. Students who understand the benefits of protecting themselves play a role in creating a safer educational environment. Work diligently to ensure your academic pursuits are protected today by contacting Todd Spodek’s Premier representation by calling 212-300-5196 or visiting his website.