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Student Conduct Program – Code of Conduct – Section 5

Boise State University
Student Code of Conduct

Section 5
Nonacademic Misconduct Complaints and Procedures

A.  Complaints and Processing
Complaints, with the exception of those alleging discrimination on the basis of sex as described below, may be brought to the Office of the Dean of Students by an individual acting as a complainant or by a party acting on behalf of the University.  Boise State University may act as a Complainant and/or Co-Complainant against a student(s) when there is no other Complainant able to participate and/or willing to participate but the infraction is sufficient for further disciplinary review. As the Student Code of Conduct applies to students on and off campus, actions resulting in potential violations may be brought forward by police or through arrest records available to the Office of the Dean of Students. 

  1. Complaints should be filed as soon as possible after the event takes place.  The longer someone waits to report an offense, the harder it becomes for University officials to obtain information and witness statements and to make determinations regarding alleged violations.
  2. Individuals may file a complaint in writing or verbally by meeting with the Student Conduct Administrator or his/her designee.  Complaints will be considered the main basis of a case and should be made as clearly and carefully as possible.  Upon receiving a complaint, the Student Conduct Administrator or designee will review the report and conduct an investigation to determine whether it appears to meet the criteria for a possible violation of the Student Code of Conduct.  The investigation may include meeting with the accused if at all possible.
  3. The Student Conduct Administrator or designee may find that the report does not have merit or that it is possible to find a resolution by mutual consent of the parties involved including the Office of the Dean of Students.  Such disposition will be final and there will be no subsequent proceedings. 
  4. If the charges cannot be disposed of by mutual consent, or if the Student Conduct Administrator determines that the alleged violation may result in harm to the Complainant, Respondent or the University community, the Complainant and the Respondent will be given the opportunity to express a preference for a conduct hearing before a hearing officer or a Conduct Board.  The Student Conduct Administrator will consider their requests when referring the case to a conduct body. The Student Conduct Administrator is the final arbiter in determining which hearing process will be used to resolve charges.

B. Sex Based Discrimination
Complaints involving discrimination on the basis of sex, including sexual misconduct, relationship abuse and violence, stalking, harassment on the basis of gender identity and expression or sexual orientation, and pregnancy discrimination should be reported to the Director of Title IX Compliance at (208) 426-1258.  Reports may also be made online at:

http://operations.boisestate.edu/institutionalcompliance/gender-based-discrimination-harassment-reporting/

Procedures for the resolution of sex-based complaints are available on the Institutional Compliance and Ethics website and will be provided to appropriate parties if a complaint warrants an investigation under Boise State Policy 1065.  The resolution process for complaints requiring investigation is described below.

  1. Following a thorough investigation the Director of Title IX Compliance will forward an investigation report to the Office of the Dean of Students.  If the investigation concludes there was a violation of University Policy the report will include recommended sanctions.
    1. Sanction recommendations are processed by the Office of the Dean of Students. The Associate Dean of Students in charge of non-academic student conduct will meet with both the Complainant and Respondent to review recommended sanctions and provide information on the student conduct process.  Each party can provide the Associate Dean of Students a statement articulating information, not contained in the summary investigation report, they feel is relevant for the conduct board to know, including whether they agree or disagree with the proposed sanctions. 
    2. The Associate Dean of Students will meet with the board to review relevant documentation, including the summary investigation report and the Complainant and Respondent statements.  The board will either choose to implement the recommended sanctions or impose modified sanctions.  If modified sanctions are imposed, the board will document the specific reasons for the modifications and send a copy of the reasoning to the Director of Title IX Compliance.  A letter including final sanctions shall be delivered in writing to the Respondent (and Complainant as appropriate pursuant to FERPA) generally within 60 days of notice.  This letter may be sent via email and will include information on appeals.
    3. Both the Complainant and Respondent may appeal the sanctions imposed by the conduct board under the appeal policy contained in the Student Code of Conduct.

C. Hearings 
Cases forwarded to a Conduct Body for a formal hearing will adhere to the following guidelines.  Formal rules of process, procedure, and/or technical rules of evidence, such as are applied in criminal or civil court, are not used in Student Conduct proceedings. 

There are two types of hearings—administrative, before a hearing officer, and board hearings. 

Administrative Hearings – In instances where the alleged violations would not result in suspension or expulsion, Respondents and Complaints may request an administrative hearing.

  1. Administrative hearings conclude the hearing process with the Respondent making a final assertion regarding responsible/not responsible for each violation. 
  2. The Student Conduct Administrator’s determination regarding violations will be made on the basis of whether it is more likely than not that the Respondent violated the Student Code of Conduct.
  3. The Student Conduct Administrator applies sanctions. 
  4. Decisions regarding the case will be made available in writing to the Respondent and Complainant via the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities office within ten (10) days of the hearing.
  5. University personnel with a need to know may be notified of the outcome of the hearing.
  6. This process is subject to appeal but not to another hearing, unless the appeals board provides direction to do so.  Appeals must be submitted in writing to the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities within ten (10) calendar days of the date printed on the decision letter (see Section 7: Appeals for more information). 

Board Hearings
Board hearings allow for formal statements, witness statements and testimony.

  1. The Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities will notify all parties or groups named in an official complaint that charges have been filed and the date, time, and place of the conduct hearing.
    • Notice of the hearing will have been fulfilled if a notice has been mailed via U.S. Postal Service to the address listed with the Student Contact Information at the Registrar’s Office post-marked at least ten (10) days in advance of the hearing or emailed to the student’s Boise State University email account at least ten (10) days in advance of the hearing.
  2. Submission of relevant information to the Student Conduct Administrator (such as witness lists, witness statements, and Respondent’s response) by the Complainant and the Respondent must occur 5 (five) days (120 hours) prior to the conduct hearing. 
    • Witness lists must include a statement regarding what information the witnesses will be providing to the board. Witnesses will be permitted to attend the hearing in order to provide new evidence; it is not necessary to provide character witnesses or to have multiple witnesses attesting to the same statements of fact.  It is the responsibility of the Complainant and Respondent to arrange for their witnesses to be present at the hearing. 
    • Testimony from witnesses who will not be at the hearing may be introduced in signed, written form. Such testimony must be submitted as described in the above section.    
  3. Relevant information (witness lists and statements, complaint and response, and any other evidence submitted to the Student Conduct Administrator) will be available to the Complainant and Respondent seventy-two (72) hours prior to the conduct hearing.  The Complainant and Respondent will receive a Hearing Checklist at this time, to ensure parties understand the order of the hearing.  It is the responsibility of the parties to pick up this information from the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities.
  4. At the hearing:
    1. The Conduct Body must constitute a quorum for the hearing to proceed.
    2. The hearing will proceed according to the Hearing Checklist.
    3. The hearing will be conducted in private.  Admission of any person to the hearing will be at the discretion of the Conduct Body Chairperson. Witnesses will be present only to share their information and to be questioned by the board.
    4. If the hearing involves more than one accused student, the chair of the Conduct Body, at his or her discretion, may permit the hearings concerning each student to be conducted separately or at the same time.
    5. The Complainant, the Respondent, and the University have the privilege of presenting witnesses, subject to cross-questioning by the Conduct Body. 
    6. All questions during the hearing will come from the Conduct Body.  The Complainant and Respondent may suggest possible questions to the Conduct Body Chair; however, the Complainant/Respondent will not ask questions of witnesses or each other directly.  All shall be submitted in writing to the Conduct Body Chairperson who will then consider their relevance and appropriateness before being posed.
    7. The Complainant and the Respondent have the right to be assisted by any advisor of their choosing.  However, the Complainant and Respondent are responsible for presenting their own information.  Advisors are not permitted to participate directly in any hearing before a Conduct Body.  It is the responsibility of the Complainant and Respondent to make arrangements for their advisor to be at the hearing.
    8. If the Respondent or Complainant, after receiving notice of charges and hearing, does not appear before the Conduct Body, the Conduct Body may hear the information from the present party and conclude the case without the other party being present. 
    9. When appropriate, the Student Conduct Administrator may accommodate concerns for the personal safety, well-being, and/or fears of confrontation of the Complainant, Respondent, and/or witnesses during the hearing by providing separate facilities, by using a visual screen, and/or by permitting participation by telephone, videophone, video conferencing, video recording, audio recording, written statement, or other means.
    10. The Chairperson has the discretion to exclude certain witnesses by stating reasonable grounds (i.e. prejudicial information).
    11. All procedural questions during the hearing are subject to the final decision of Conduct Body Chair at the time of the hearing.
    12. At the end of the hearing, all disseminated materials will be returned to the Student Conduct Administrator. 
  5. After the hearing, the Conduct Body will determine (by simple majority vote if the Conduct Body consists of more than one person) whether the Respondent has violated the Student Code of Conduct.  The Conduct Body’s determination will be made on the basis of whether it is more likely than not that the Respondent violated the Student Code of Conduct.
  6. Decisions regarding the case will be made available in writing via U.S. Postal Service or Boise State email to the Respondent and Complainant via the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities office within ten (10) days of the hearing.
    1. Respondent’s notification will include whether or not there was a finding of responsible for each charge, and if a violation of the Student Code of Conduct was deemed to have occurred, what sanctions will apply.
    2. Complainant’s notification will include whether or not there was a finding of responsible for each charge, and information regarding sanctions that 1) apply directly to the Complainant (for example, a no contact order or exclusion from campus) or 2) in the case of violence or a non-forcible sex offense, the Complainant may receive all information regarding the decision, including all sanctions.
    3. University personnel with a need to know may also be notified of the outcome of the hearing.
  7. Appeals must be submitted in writing to the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities within ten (10) calendar days of the date printed on the decision letter (See Section 7: Appeals for more information). 

D. Respondent and Complainant Rights and Responsibilities

  1. To challenge any member of the Conduct Body if the Complainant believes that the person is biased (challenges to be ruled on by the Student Conduct Administrator);
  2. To document in writing any response to the alleged violation.  This report would then also be a part of any appeals process and should be written as carefully and completely as possible.
  3. To identify an advisor to assist during the conduct process. The Office of the Dean of Students can assist identifying an advisor if requested by either the Complainants or Respondents.

E.   Record of Hearing
It is the sole discretion of the hearing officer to determine whether or not an official audio or visual recording of a hearing will be made.  If a record is to be made, a single record, such as a written record or audio recording, of every hearing before a Conduct Body will be maintained by the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities.  The record will be the sole property of Boise State University.  No other audio or visual recordings of hearings will be allowed.  Deliberations will not be recorded.  All audio and visual recordings will be destroyed at the conclusion of seven (7) years following completion of the individual conduct process.  After that time, the written decision letters will remain as the official University record.