Miltenberg: “Turning the Tide Against Campus Kangaroo ‘Rape’ Courts,” New York Post


“John Doe” was in his second year in Pennsylvania State University’s honors program when he told a fellow student she was “beautiful” in a flirty text session that led to the two of them having sex. Now the 19-year-old may never get his degree from Penn State or any other college. Young men like Doe, convicted of sexual misconduct by campus kangaroo courts, are an all too familiar feature of today’s college landscape. The good news is that a growing movement of lawyers, activists and parents is pushing back. Not a month goes by lately without a news story about a young man scoring a large settlement against his school for having violated his due-process rights. But how far such litigation efforts can go toward fixing the problem is an open question … Some 500 cases have been brought against colleges since 2011, when the Obama administration ­issued its infamous “Dear Colleague” letter, threatening to withhold federal funding from schools that fail to ­devote sufficient resources to prosecuting sexual misconduct. The letter also pushed colleges to lower the ­evidentiary standard for proving an accusation. The letter thus incentivized schools to punish alleged miscreants — even ones facing dubious claims. Lawyers now talk about life before the letter and after. As New York-based attorney Andrew Miltenberg points out, before the letter, 55 schools faced federal probes. “Within months after publication there were several hundred.” Miltenberg is one of a new class of lawyers who specialize in campus due-process cases; he represented the successful defendant in Columbia University’s “Mattress Girl” affair, for example. This month, he launched the first ever class-action suit on behalf of college students denied due process.

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