Sexual Assault

Accused Student Says He Was Told to 'Stay Quiet' About His Own Lack of Consent

Denied a hearing and suspended, the recent Rollins College graduate is now suing.

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Hongqi Zhang (aka Michael Zhang) | Dreamstime

When a fellow Rollins College student accused Nicholas Mancini of sexual assault in January 2016, Mancini told campus investigators that his accuser had "initiated all physical contact with him 'without asking for his consent.'" Mancini also maintained that the incident had been limited to some kissing, which his accuser had stopped, "stating that she should not 'do this' because she has a boyfriend." According to Mancini, the college's Title IX coordinator advised him "to not make a report concerning his Consent Complaint and threatened him to 'stay quiet' about his Consent Complaint."

Mancini's account may or may not be accurate. It's just one side of the story. Sexual misconduct hearings exist precisely for the purpose of resolving parties' conflicting narratives and determining, as accurately as possible, who is telling the truth.

But Nicholas Mancini didn't get a hearing.

Instead, after notifying Mancini of nothing more than the bare fact that "a report of sexual assault had been alleged" against him, the college launched an investigation into the incident and determined, without a hearing, that Mancini had violated the college's sexual misconduct policy. He was suspended for two semesters (with the direction that a notation of the suspension be placed on his transcript) and permanently barred from campus housing.

According to Mancini, not only was there no hearing, but even the investigation was shoddy and incomplete. Mancini claims that rather than allowing him to submit a list of witnesses to be interviewed, the investigator interviewed only witnesses of her own choosing, and "also did not give Plaintiff 'the opportunity to submit questions to be asked' of the Accuser and other witnesses," as promised by college policy.

Cross-examination is an essential tool, particularly in cases that turn almost entirely on the credibility of two people with conflicting accounts of an incident. The critical importance of cross-examination to credibility determinations is why the U.S. Supreme Court has called it the "greatest legal engine ever invented for the discovery of truth."

Mancini sued Rollins over these procedural deficiencies, alleging (among other things) that the college had discriminated against him on the basis of sex and had breached its contract with him by failing to follow its own policies. Earlier this month, a federal judge denied the college's motion to dismiss Mancini's sex discrimination and breach of contract claims, allowing those claims to move forward to the next stage of litigation.

Mancini's lawsuit is one of more than 170 such cases brought by students accused of sexual misconduct since April 4, 2011—the day when the Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights (OCR) issued the sexual misconduct "Dear Colleague" letter that kicked off a long stretch of overly aggressive enforcement and expansion of Title IX, the federal law prohibiting sex discrimination at colleges and universities receiving federal funding (which is virtually all of them). New cases continue to be filed at a fast pace: Six new federal lawsuits have been filed in July alone. Filings in state courts are much harder to track, but there have almost certainly been new cases filed there too.

Although there have been a number of court rulings favorable to accused students in these cases—and many more favorable settlements—the spate of lawsuits has not done much to move the needle back towards a fairer process for students accused of sexual misconduct and other serious wrongdoing. Perhaps that is because, as Naomi Schaefer Riley recently wrote, these suits "have not been expensive or frequent enough to deter schools from these witch trials," particularly when compared with the intense financial pressure on schools from OCR, which oversees the implementation of Title IX on campus and can ultimately initiate proceedings to withdraw a school's federal funding for noncompliance. As Riley points out, many of these lawsuits end in confidential settlements, which may be good for the individual plaintiffs involved but do not produce the legal precedents—or large jury verdicts—that might deter other schools from behaving in the same way.

Since Betsy DeVos became secretary of education, there have been some signals that OCR might rethink its aggressive micromanagement of schools' procedures for handling sexual misconduct. But how that might play out over the next several years still remains to be seen.

So for the time being, the courts remain the only meaningful option for students whose educational and professional lives have been left in ruins by processes that lack even the most basic procedural safeguards. As long as that remains the case, we can expect to see many more cases like this one.

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  1. It happens (to men).

  2. Thank god my college days are long behind me. I remember my 20s, and boy would I have hated to have a girl kiss me without first asking permission. Ew.

    1. Doesn’t it depend on the girl?

      1. He’ll take what he can get.

  3. I’m still wondering how Title IX (on sex discrimination) even applies to sexual assault.

    1. If I were Education Secretary, my “dear colleagues” letter would be:

      Dear colleagues,

      If someone comes to you with allegations of rape, give them the number for the cops. You could be nice and dial it for them, but call the cops. Did I mention to call the cops?

      Signed,
      -me

      1. Call the cops? Won’t they just come and shoot everyone out of fear for their safety?

        1. Well, they’ll shoot the dogs first, for sure…then the kangaroos?

          Still, injecting college administrators into what are either non-criminal or criminal acts (violation of behavioral standards and school rules vs. actual defined-in-law crimes) basically constitutes a usurpation of lawmaking authority. They also get to set up a department of “enforcing these laws we’ve created from whole cloth and OCR memos”, with full-sized wages for people who have degrees in gender studies of some sort. Not hard to see the motivation there. Good thing they can’t actually throw people in jail.

        2. They’re too busy waging wars against moving violations and illegal botany. Stuff like rape and robberies get talked to a lower priority and you get a phone call from some investigator at most, assuming anyone is free.

      2. The kangaroo court enthusiasts know that in the vast majority of these cases the police/courts would (correctly) determine that there isn’t enough evidence to prosecute, let alone convict. The whole point is to mete out extrajudicial punishment.

        1. Not even enough to arrest in many of these cases. I fact, I’ll bet some of them wouldn’t even merit anything beyond taking a statement. Not even questioning at the station.

      3. I still can’t understand how a college can investigate a crime. It just seems to me that anyone who reports any crime to a college the response should be, call the cops.

        1. By ‘investigate a crime’, you really mean ‘prove the evil male rapist guilty’, because that’s the goal for the leftist administrators.

    2. Most of what the Obama administration did was illegal…

  4. < blockquote>[…]the spate of lawsuits has not done much to move the needle back towards a fairer process for students accused of sexual misconduct and other serious wrongdoing[…] Naomi Schaefer Riley recently wrote, these suits “have not been expensive or frequent enough to deter schools from these witch trials[.]”

    Perhaps the monetary aspect is there but considering how fast, in comparison, the private sector reacts to lawsuits by: changing procedures, policies, labelling, manufacturing processes or contractual changes, I have to conclude that the unwillingness of these institutions of higher learning to make changes after a few lawsuits stems from ideological stubbornness and not because of pragmatic concerns. Just what’s so difficult about changing your procedures?

    1. Incentives. Follow the incentives. What incentives do colleges have to play fair? Judging from 170 lawsuits for umpteen thousand colleges, not much. What incentives do colleges have to play the social justice game? Judging by how popular that is with students, plenty.

      1. Also, they have slot more to fear from lawsuits by female accusers who don’t think the university did enough for them (i.e. expel the guy they accused).and those lawsuits would get more favorable media coverage. Better to be sued by men falsely accused of rape than women falsely accusing men of rape. Sad but true it seems.

        1. In support of this notion, I give you matress girl. She definitely got more favorable coverage than all 170 of these other cases combined. Probably a couple of orders of magnitude more.

          1. Despite the numerous FACTS she admitted to that sank her story. And she is treated as a celebrity ‘victim’ and will be for life.

      2. It’s a wonderful opportunity to set these universities up for jackpot settlements. I’m tempted to enroll at one of the more idiotic schools and work a deal with a female student to bait the university into sanctioning me as aggressively as possible for a disproven accusation. Then cut the accuser in for a piece of that fat money cake.

  5. Cross examination is indeed essential to determining the truth of the matter when two men have conflicting accounts.

    However, it is wholly unnecessary and hurtful when a woman reports a sexual assault.

    Women do not lie about such matters and they are never vindictive. None, never. This is known.

    1. Feminists INSIST that women are ALWAYS capable of doing EVERYTHING that a man can do (with the possible exception of adroitly writing yellow marks in the snow, using only natural body parts).

      However, men, and only men, are capable of “raping” a member of the opposite sex, while both partners are drunk! Drunken men can consent, drunken women cannot! And only men can ever “rape” a woman, when they (the men) are totally passed-out drunk! (As in, woman fondles passed-out man, regrets it later).

      These things, too, are “known”…

      1. I knew a girl who could write her name in the snow with urine. She was a catch, I tell you.

        1. I believe it as long as she could run fast enough while peeing!

        2. Caitlyn Jenner doesn’t count.

      2. That’s because to these next wave feminists women don’t actually have any agency. Only men do. It’s the underpinning assumption behind most of their bullshit. It is assumed that the ‘Patriarchy’ is omniscient and all power, no matter how much evidence to the contrary there might be.

  6. Wait… so there was some kissing… and knowing how the rules are enforced these days I cannot expect that he put his hands on her body anywhere. And this results in charges?

    That she should even have some idea that this is a case for the authorities to settle is a bizarre concept to me. She is truly a sheep with no concept of self-ownership. She must truly believe that she had no will – in any sense – over what happened.

    1. A kiss is just a kiss
      a sigh is just a sigh
      the fundamental things apply
      we’ll fuck you over so hard you’ll never think of ever doing anything but jerking off for the rest of you life
      as time goes by

      1. Hell, I would bet that, after that went down, he spends hours considering if he should or shouldn’t jerk off.

      2. Sugar is sweet,
        And so is honey,
        Beat your meat,
        And save your money!

    2. “That she should even have some idea that this is a case for the authorities to settle is a bizarre concept to me. She is truly a sheep with no concept of self-ownership. She must truly believe that she had no will – in any sense – over what happened.”

      Ah, but that’s what all the “Women’s advocates” and sexual assault counselors are for! (Besides jobs for the people who had the bad judgement to incur huge debt getting a degree in gender studies) Not the frequent 6-month-to-two-years delays between the “incident” and the charges coming forth. You’d think something like bad sex would become less painful over time, and it does, only some outside incitement would result in filing such minor charges. And the people who create the distress that leads to the charges are in charge of deciding the outcome. NOT a good system, if you’re at all concerned about such things as “fairness”, “truth”, and “justice”. And maybe they’re not.

  7. … many of these lawsuits end in confidential settlements, which may be good for the individual plaintiffs involved but do not produce the legal precedents?or large jury verdicts?that might deter other schools from behaving in the same way.

    If it were I, it would be either a more modest settlement with full public disclosure or an assload of hush money. Pick one.

    1. A goodly amount of money + lawyers paid + transcript and record cleared now, or a trial with tons of publicity to show up in google searches for years + a lot more money + years of proceedings distracting you from getting on with your new job and social life ….. I think most people would say the years of stalled life is not worth the extra money.

      1. Plus the fact that you will almost certainly draw huge national attention to yourself, and everyone will just assume you’re a rapist.

  8. These matters should be given an initial look by a specialized school admin. If any probable cause or merit (I know the devil is in the details i.e. definitions) exists the matter should be turned over to the police for investigation and prosecution if warranted. School administrators are not investigators, criminal or otherwise. The only reason a school and the Dept. of Ed. want to maintain the status quo is for control and cover-up.

    1. Why do these matters even warrant that much attention from the school?
      Do burglaries or non-sexual assaults on campus go through ‘an initial look by a specialized school admin’? Pretty sure they don’t, although don’t spread it around. Schools just love to create positions for ‘specialized’ admins.

  9. Remove title IV, simple.

    From what I read and hear in the media, the females are clearly superior to men now.

    Burn it with fire.

    1. Well, I like to keep it up and Title IV has to do with federal student loan dispersement. So probably that could use some changes too.

    2. The most amusing part is the original purpose of this title, in particular, is undermined almost completely by modern attitudes towards things like the transsexuals. Man and woman are words with absolutely no set meaning, so how could one possibly apply something like Title IV?

      Or, to put it another way; Now that a man can play women’s softball, is there any reason to have a women’s softball team in the first place?

  10. Correction: – title IX.

    1. Damn it, trickle down error!

  11. Has anyone started a list of colleges that you should not attend if you are a man.

    1. That would crash the interweb.

    2. Question 1: Do you have to go to campus, or can you do all classwork online?

    3. All coed colleges.

  12. Seriously, this ‘sex, regret, rape’ on campus is retarded. To even entertain it is retarded. That it even became a ‘thing’ with its own fucking articles is retarded.

    From Duke lacrosse to that unstable idiot who carries a mattress around, we’re enabling people to take ‘regret’ to mean something more nefarious, like rape. You even have Reason writers posing as libertarians posting hyper tweets looking to ruin a person’s job employment prospects over a fucken joke.

    Get. Over. Yourselves.

    Just fuck off already you babies.

    1. Something like that.

    2. It’s all retarded. Cultural appropriation is another one people should just be rollover their eyes about and saying stfu idiots.

  13. Students — if an investigator tells you to keep your issue quiet, ignore them and make it as public as humanly possible.

    No good comes out of keeping quiet for a college.

  14. “Sexual misconduct hearings exist precisely for the purpose of resolving parties’ conflicting narratives and determining, as accurately as possible, who is telling the truth.”

    No. The hearings exist to make damn sure the asshole male gets his life ruined as completely as possible.

  15. The female student in this case is a child, far too immature to be let loose on a college campus. She is an embarrassment to my sex! I can’t believe the stupid world we live in. Once, I was interested in staying alive because I wanted to see what would happen with the world. I had a genuine curiosity. But it’s no longer a motivator; every day I feel like I’m being pummeled in the head by the stupidity encountered when perusing the news of the world.

    1. 99.8 % of American women are an embarrassment to your gender.

      1. I’ll choose to believe you’re not representative of yours.

        1. Glad to know that there are still some women who have a level head like you, amelia. Keep up the good fight!

    2. There exists (I say without googling anything) at this “Rollins College”, a department (funded by federal grant, better known as “Your Tax Dollars”) that is supposed to provide help, solace, counseling, to women who have been assaulted, raped, etc.

      I suspect that more accurately, they advise women that anything that happens, any bad sexual experience or regrettable hookup, is cause for filing a charge of (whatever the euphemism is…) “sexual assault” “sexual misconduct” “inadequate consent sex” etc., etc.

      It took them six months to convince this poor chick that her unfortunate encounter rose to the level of complaint, but they did. Seen this very dynamic in case after case.

      1. The guy that got SCIRN busted should send that hot chick in with a hidden camera to that group and see what they do.

      2. I can’t imagine going to them with such a complaint. I would’ve been quite embarrassed. I really like my generation of jaded slackers much better than the current crop.

  16. Well, a crime is a crime and it does not matter who commits it.

  17. My advice to any male college student, anywhere is just stay far away from all female college students, it’s just to risky. If you get horny, check out the townie girls, far less likely to be feminist nutjobs.

    1. Why don’t we just bring back single-sex colleges as long as they are privately funded? Then men could attend college in peace without dealing with radical feminists as long as these radfems are not working at the all-male university.

  18. “greatest legal engine ever invented for the discovery of truth.”

    Truth is so misogynistic, patriarchal, and creepy.

  19. If I had a son in college my advise to him would be “Stay away from the co-ends, hands off. If you want to have sex hire a prostitute. 1. In the long run it will be cheaper, 2. The sex will probably be better, and 3. Most importantly, she’ll be gone in the morning.”

  20. As Riley points out, many of these lawsuits end in confidential settlements, which may be good for the individual plaintiffs involved but do not produce the legal precedents?or large jury verdicts?that might deter other schools from behaving in the same way.

    To accomplish anything, verdicts needs to be so large they bankrupt the school. As it is school administrators are primarily concerned about bullying (not to mention outright terrorism) from the left, that will potentially get them fired. Not to mention the lopsided situation where the school is facing some added costs while the student is facing destruction of their lives.

    1. Just attend a different school each year and set them up for a big settlement. It wouldn’t take too many years to accumulate $10 million. Then just invest wisely. Like in a law firm that sues these idiot schools.

  21. You can tell the universities are serious about righting the process because they don’t fire the investigators.

  22. If this had happened before the internet it would be (at least almost) entirely unseen, so that’s something.

  23. I’m skeptical that DeVos will be able to enact new policy, simply because if she tries, she will be accused of “enabling” assault at the least and “supporting” assault at the worst. Then here comes the mob.

    The batshit rhetoric against reform will win the day, simply because it automatically puts any critic of this policy in a defensive position.

    1. Who cares? She isn’t elected, and Trumo wouldn’t fire her for anything like that.

      1. In fact, in the spirit of this administration, at a press conference, she should take a print out of Title IX and rub it on her ass and say “that’s what I think of Title IX”. Then proceed to get it eliminated.

        1. Betsy DeVos doesn’t strike me as someone who will back down easily.

    2. “The batshit rhetoric against reform will win the day, simply because it automatically puts any critic of this policy in a defensive position.”

      Isn’t this is how every witch hunt works? They don’t always win in the end, if ever.

  24. The key here seems to be that they violated their own written policy. Should be a simple case.

  25. Since Betsy DeVos became secretary of education, there have been some signals that OCR might rethink its aggressive micromanagement of schools’ procedures for handling sexual misconduct. But how that might play out over the next several years still remains to be seen.

    I’m guessing a lot of whining, wailing, and gnashing of teeth from the pinheads who push this horseshit.

  26. Title IX is obsolete with the inclusion of trans “women” into women’s sports programs. Gender identity now trumps biological sex, so why should we discriminate based on sex at all? Soon all the best colleges will heavily recruit trans women for women sports programs and biological women will be out in the cold exactly where they were before Title IX.
    Way to go, Leftists! LOL

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  28. Make Title IX coordinators mandatory reporters. They’re finding out about potential sexual assaults and must be compelled to report the crime under threat of jail time if they don’t call police immediately.

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