Title IX Defense Attorney

Every college and university has a different code of student conduct and a mechanism for policing and adjudicating violations of the student code of conduct.

Campus sexual misconduct is a category of many different types of misconduct and is often referred to as “Title IX” offenses. Title IX is not an offense. It is a body of federal law enacted in the 1970’s to eliminate gender bias on college and university campuses. It applies to colleges and universities that accept federal money.


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Campus sexual misconduct includes these types of offenses:

  • Sexual assault
  • Sexual harassment
  • Gender-based harassment
  • Sexual violence
  • Relationship and interpersonal violence
  • Stalking
  • Retaliation
  • Non-consensual sexual touching

When a student makes a complaint that alleges any of the sorts of violations that fit into the Title IX category, the college or university will almost always:

  • Take a written or verbal complaint from the “Complainant”
  • Notify the accused, often called the “Respondent”
  • Request a written or verbal response from the Respondent
  • Assign the matter to an investigator
    • Investigators can be
      • external – hired from outside of the college
      • internal – employed by the college
    • Investigate
      • Interview the Complainant and Respondent
      • Interview other witnesses
      • Collect evidence
        • Text messages
        • Social media
        • Video surveillance
      • Prepare an investigation Report
      • Share the Investigation Report with the Complainant and Respondent and allow each to share their concerns with the Investigation Report and propose corrections
      • Hearing
      • Report whether the Complainant proved by a fair preponderance of the evidence that the Respondent is responsible for the alleged violation(s)
      • Report Sanctions if the Respondent was found responsible
        • Suspension
        • Termination
      • Appeal

From the moment an accused student learns that he or she has been accused of campus misconduct, he or she is strongly advised to take these steps:

  • Say nothing about the matter to anyone
  • Tell your parents
  • Hire a qualified attorney to be the accused student’s advisor

Advisor – every student accused of sexual wrongdoing is allowed to have the assistance of an advisor.  Although, the advisor can be someone from a list of members of the campus community, it is in your best interest to hire an attorney to protect your rights.  If the accused student wants an attorney to advise him or her, he or she is responsible for locating, hiring, and paying for that attorney to advise.

Hiring an experienced attorney to defend any alleged wrongdoing and assist you with the important documentation is the singe most important part of success.  Our office will:

  • Prepare the student to give a statement
  • Investigate
  • Identify and assemble relevant evidence
  • Counsel the student with regard to rules and policies
  • Prepare and accompany the student for his or her interview(s)
  • Examine the evidence and create a defense
  • Prepare a written challenge to the evidence
  • Prepare and accompany the student at the hearing
  • Appeal if an appeal is necessary
  • Determine whether the student has a viable legal claim against the college or university or for its mishandling of the student conduct process

Recent Results:

Attorney John R. Grasso has successfully defended students accused of campus wrongdoing, campus sexual assault, and Title IX offenses at:

  • Brown University
  • Providence College
  • Rhode Island College
  • Bryant University
  • Roger Williams University
  • University of Rhode Island
  • Johnson and Wales University
  • Wheaton College
  • University of Massachusetts

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Testimonials - See What Past Clients Are Saying about Rhode Island Defense Attorney John R. Grasso