Campus Due Process Litigation Tracker

Doe v. Belmont University, 367 F. Supp. 3d 732 (M.D. Tenn. 2019)

School type: Private
State: Tennessee
Federal Circuit: Sixth
Decision primarily favorable to: University
Stage of litigation: Motion for summary judgment
Keywords: Title IX

The court granted the university’s motion for summary judgment.

The Plaintiff in this case was found ‘not responsible’ for sexual misconduct violations, but was found responsible for violations of the school’s visitation policy that were discovered in the course of the sexual misconduct investigation, as well as for violations of the university’s “Deceptive Behavior” policy for not being truthful during the sexual misconduct investigation. He was suspended for a semester and required to spend the remainder of his tenure at Belmont on disciplinary probation.

Plaintiff claimed he was the victim of Title IX retaliation, arguing that he was punished for the other violations as a consequence of his participation in the Title IX sexual misconduct investigation. But Plaintiff never complained about any sex discrimination — in fact, the sexual misconduct process exonerated him. So the other disciplinary actions against him can’t possibly have been in retaliation for sex discrimination, since he never complained of it.