If you have been accused of sexual assault on a college campus, you will be required to follow the campus processes for resolving the case. Most students don’t realize that the hearing is the most important part of the process. It is where they will be given the opportunity to share their account of the events and present their evidence.
The accused will be under immense stress as school authorities will likely already assume guilt. This kind of environment leaves a lot of chances to stumble and accidentally incriminate oneself. Even a lawyer isn’t allowed to speak on behalf of the accused. If the administration finds the accused guilty, disciplinary actions, that ultimately lead to suspension or expulsion, will be taken immediately.
It may seem like that accused is doomed from the start, but an experienced attorney can help in many ways. They can help prepare everything needed so that the accused is confident and coherent when they speak. They can counsel on school laws and exactly what to expect. Just their presence can also be a boost to student moral and send a clear message to the administration that they must carefully follow their rules and laws.
It is important to know exactly what you are getting into before entering a sexual assault hearing as the stakes are high.
Prepare a Statement
Be honest and be empathetic. Accusers generally don’t blatantly lie. Though their account may be skewed, they genuinely feel that some wrong doing occurred. Keep this in mind as you write. Your statement will be your account of the events that transpired. You can express honest mistakes without admitting guilt. Perhaps you feel regret over consuming too much alcohol. Admitting this is not claiming guilt.
Discuss the Evidence
You don’t want to hand a pile of screenshots and social media messages without referencing them in your statement. School administrators won’t be as thorough referencing your evidence if they don’t have a direct explanation for it. You will need enough copies for every administrator there and you will need to present your evidence in clear and chronological order.
Keep a Calm Demeanor
This might seem an easy task, but keep in mind that the accuser may get very emotional and people will naturally flock to comfort them. How frustrating, especially when it is possible that you did nothing. The accuser may even try to provoke a reaction because if you get angry in the hearing, the lack of self control will be used against you. You must consistently present yourself in a calm and professional manner.
Answer and Ask Questions
Practice for the hearing with friends and family. Have them think up the most difficult questions they can so you can prepare yourself for the stressful scrutiny of the school administration. Use this time to practice a calm demeanor throughout the questioning. You will also need to pay careful attention to the account of the accused. You can ask questions about parts that would help your case and get them to elaborate in your favor. The more good they can say, the better chance you have for a favorable outcome in your hearing.
Manchester & Associates Defense
Contact Manchester & Associates today for help if you are facing sexual assault charges. The hearing will come quickly and it is your best chance at success. Let an experienced attorney help you increase the odds greatly in your favor.