In student conduct cases involving sexual and interpersonal misconduct, the respondent is the student, student organization, or other individual accused of misconduct. Below you will find explanations on what will occur when the University undertakes an investigation and adjudicationprocess and a summary of your rights as a respondent in that process. For a full description of those rights, you can refer to the Sexual and Interpersonal Misconduct Policy and Notification of Complainant's Rights or the Code of Student Conduct.
Advisor/Support Person. You may bring an advisor or support person of your choice (e.g., parent, friend, lawyer, advocate) with you to any meetings or hearings during the investigation, adjudication, or appeal process - this person may provide advice or support but may not speak for you during the process unless permitted by the Code of Student Conduct. When choosing an advisor or support person, please choose someone who will not also be involved in the matter as a witness.
Confidentiality and Privacy. In a University investigation, respondents are provided information about the allegations to allow them a fair opportunity to respond. The level of detail necessary to do that, including revealing the complainant’s (the person bringing the complaint) identity, may vary depending upon the circumstances of the misconduct and the action to be taken. The privacy of both parties will be respected and safeguarded at all times. Information shared during an investigation is limited to those University employees who need to know in order to carry out their responsibilities to review, investigate and/or resolve these matters.
Retaliation. The University prohibits retaliation. All parties and witnesses are protected from any form of retaliation for participating in the investigation or filing a complaint. Additionally, if you feel that one of the parties, or friends, teammates, or family members of the parties is engaging in harassment or other misconduct against you because of your participation in an investigation or for filing a complaint, you should let the University know.
Resources for Support. The University offers a variety of support services to students, including counseling through the Student Counseling Center. Resources can be located on the Title IX webpage or through the Sexual and Interpersonal Misconduct Policy.
Policy Resource. For the both the complainant and the respondent, a Policy Resource is available anytime throughout the process. These Drake employees are knowledgeable on the policies and processes related to cases under the Sexual and Interpersonal Misconduct Policy and the Code of Student Conduct. They can serve as a resource for questions over the policy, process, and steps throughout the investigation and disciplinary process. While they are not advisors, they can answer questions that may come up through the process and help make contacts for additional support or information. The Policy Resources are:
Leah Berte, email@example.com, 515-271-2917
Kevin Saunders, firstname.lastname@example.org, 515-271-1984
Neutral Investigation. Upon receipt of a complaint and during an investigation, the University does not take sides. We are committed to providing a prompt, thorough, fair and impartial review, and our investigations are focused on the available information. Throughout the investigation and adjudication process, the standard of evidence to be used is a preponderance of evidence, or whether it is more likely than not that a policy violation occurred.
Interviewing the Parties. Typically, the dean of students or a designee (the “investigator”) will first meet with the complainant in order to fully understand the allegations. The complainant is strongly encouraged to share all information, including documentation and names of witness, if any, with the investigator. After the investigator understands the nature and scope of the allegations, you will be asked about the allegations and given a full and fair opportunity to respond. You are also strongly encouraged to share all information, including documentation and names of witnesses, if any, with the investigator. The parties are not present during each other’s interviews.
Gathering Other Information. The investigator interviews witnesses and reviews all documentation deemed relevant to the situation. The investigator may also contact the parties with additional questions or to request additional information.
Investigator’s Report. The investigator will consider all information gathered during an investigation and prepare a report which will be shared with both parties.
Resolution by Agreement. At any time, the dean of students or designee may attempt to resolve complaints short of the adjudication process or formal hearing if the parties are interested, and will discuss the matter with each party—separately. There is no mediation in cases of sexual and interpersonal misconduct. In cases of alleged violence or sexual/ interpersonal conduct, the complainant shall nonetheless be given a right to be heard on sanctions or to end the resolution process at any time and proceed to a formal proceeding
Decision. When the investigation is complete, the dean of students or designee will determine whether it is more likely than not that a policy violation occurred. The dean of students or designee may meet with the parties before issuing the determination, but both parties will be notified simultaneously of the decision. If the dean or designee finds a party responsible and recommends a sanction less than suspension or expulsion, the dean will impose sanctions, which will conclude the adjudication of the complaint. The University endeavors to complete the investigatory and adjudication process within 60 calendar days.
Hearing. If the dean or designee recommends suspension or expulsion, or if either party elects a formal hearing be held, a hearing officer will hear the evidence, determine whether it is more likely than not that a policy violation occurred, and impose sanctions if applicable. All parties may be present at the hearing but are not required to sit in the same room—accommodations can be made.