A federal judge has recommended that James Madison University pay nearly $850,000 in damages to an anonymous student who says the school punished him for a rape he didn’t commit, using a secretive process that didn’t allow him to confront witnesses or present evidence.
The complainant, John Doe, won his lawsuit against James Madison just before Christmas, according to The College Fix, when another federal court judge found that the school had violated his Constitutional right to due process when they gave him a five and a half year suspension based on a bizarre “double jeopardy” clause contained in a 2011 Obama Administration directive to institutions of higher education.
The “Dear Colleague” letter instructed schools to suspend the guarantee against double jeopardy if further evidence presented itself after a student had been cleared of a sexual assault. In Doe’s case, he was accused of rape by a female classmate and exonerated by a faculty panel.
But then, his accuser, “Jane Roe,” complained that she wasn’t given a fair hearing, and James Madison empaneled a second investigative body — this time, one that did not allow Doe to present evidence or confront witnesses — who leveled a punishment against Doe, even though they never effectively found him guilty of any crime.
“[T]he appeal board effectively reversed the decision of the hearing board without any explanation whatsoever,” the judge said, “and without ever expressing a finding that Doe was responsible for sexual misconduct.”
This, the judge found in December, was a violation of Doe’s Constitutional rights — and a shocking example of how the campaign against campus sexual assault has destroyed the concept of due process at America’s colleges.
James Madison, it seems, will have the honor of paying a record judgment as a reward for caving to feminists and sex assault activists.
What might be the largest award in any campus due process case (from the James Madison lawsuit, where appeals panel found accused student guilty using flawed evidence). JMU aggressively litigated this case; that record haunted them in fee stage.https://t.co/xdwF2u2iGw pic.twitter.com/QgQbzGl6gm
— KC Johnson (@kcjohnson9) February 3, 2018
James Madison University has not said whether it will alter its policies, however, the Trump Department of Education has rescinded the Obama Administration’s “Dear Colleague” letter.