The plaintiffs' complaint in this case alleged a number of procedural flaws including:
- that they were denied the opportunity to ask "critical questions" of the witnesses
- that the university withheld from them the witness statements, witness lists, and other evidence that they had the right to review before the hearing
- that they were denied the right to have their attorney present even though university policy affords them this right
- and that the investigators improperly influenced the disciplinary board in the way their presented their findings and conclusions
In sum, the court rejected the claim that the university's sexual assault awareness programs supported the inference sex discrimination (which is probably reassuring for universities running similar programs). But it did permit plaintiffs to seek to "uncover discoverable and admissible evidence that Plaintiffs' gender was a motivating factor behind SU's allegedly flawed disciplinary procedures and wrongful conclusions." As a practical matter, Salisbury University will have to respond to the plaintiffs' requests for information, records, and depositions. If no evidence to support bias turns up, the university can later move for summary judgment.
Doe v. Salisbury Univ., 2015 WL 5005811 (D. Md. Aug. 21, 2015).