Title IX / College Discipline Practice - Warshaw Burstein LLP | <em >Doe v. Rollins Coll</em >., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 7437 (M.D. Fla. 2019) <p ></p >
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  • Doe v. Rollins Coll., 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 7437 (M.D. Fla. 2019)

    John Doe was notified that there had been a complaint of sexual assault filed against him and the College launched an investigation.  Over the course of this investigation, more than twenty interviews were conducted, but none of the witnesses had first-hand knowledge of the events that transpired between John Doe and Jane Roe.  The investigation revealed that both John Doe and Jane Roe had breached Rollins College’s Sexual Misconduct Policy, but the investigation report favored Jane Roe’s accounting of events over John Doe’s.  The report included inappropriate comments about John Doe and gave more weight to Jane Roe and her witnesses over John Doe and his witnesses. John Doe was found responsible for violating the Sexual Misconduct Policy. He was expelled and banned from graduation and alumni events.  

    The Court denied Rollins’ motion to dismiss in its entirety.  Plaintiff erroneous outcome claim was sustained due to the presence of public criticism over the College’s handling of sexual assault cases and the College’s one-sided investigation slanted in favor of Jane Roe and her witnesses.  Plaintiff’s selective enforcement claim was also sustained where he sufficiently alleged that the investigation equally supported disciplinary action against Jane Roe just as it supported action against John Doe, yet action was only taken against John Doe. 

    Plaintiff’s breach of contract claimed was sustained. Plaintiff’s payment of tuition constituted a contractual relationship with the College, and the terms of this contract included the College’s policies and procedures.  Plaintiff sufficiently alleged that Rollins breached an implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing when the College’s investigation did not allow Plaintiff to cross-examine or question Jane Roe, lacked substantive evidence and did not comply with federal law.  

    CATEGORY: Sexual Misconduct