The group of students accused of filing a false police report and University officials reached an agreement that removed the need for the preliminary injunction hearing that was originally scheduled for Oct. 15, and filed a request that the court cancel the hearing, which was approved by the court on Oct. 14.
The lawsuit was originally filed by the six students who claimed they did not receive due process in the disciplinary hearings through the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities. The students were accused of filing a false police report in which they claimed another student, Christin Evans, was threatening to stab other students with a pair of scissors.
University Police officers responded to the call, made by a community assistant, and were let into Evans’ room through her suitemate’s room. Once police saw there was no threat, they deescalated their response and spoke with Evans outside the room. Two of the six students have since withdrawn from the University, according to a statement filed by Dennis Mosely, director of the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities.
Prior to the agreement, the University filed a response to the lawsuit, denying the claim there was no due process. The response states they provided the students with a link to SFA Policy 10.4, the Student Code of Conduct, which explains the disciplinary hearing process and what kind of conduct is prohibited.
The response also said the students were provided an opportunity to read the UPD incident report, to sign acknowledgments of their rights and to notify the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities of any attorney who would be present in the hearing.
The next step was an informal hearing to provide any information they deem necessary, dealing only with SFA conduct policy, not crimes, according to University procedure. The response says four of six students have already attended their informal hearing.
After the informal hearing is an investigation, followed by a decision made by Mosely. The plaintiffs can accept or appeal the decision. A formal hearing will follow if an appeal is made.
The University officials involved in the lawsuit also said, “SFA has never expressed an opinion about whether any individual Plaintiff is responsible for criminal or code of conduct violations,” also noting that they have made clear distinctions of types of investigations while trying to provide information to the community.