Sometimes, things get a little out of hand. Maybe you made a mistake. Maybe someone has falsely accused you of something. Perhaps it’s a little bit of both?
In any case, campus misbehavior can have serious consequences. You could be facing campus discipline, which might result in your suspension or expulsion from college. Unfortunately, because there is a national spotlight on campus crime, administrators may be eager to make examples of students who make mistakes.
Worse, a disciplinary action isn’t all you could be facing. Depending on the circumstances, you could be referred for criminal prosecution.
If you’re accused of a crime on campus, it’s in your interest to mount a strong defense. Summers, Rufolo & Rodgers can provide private, nonjudgmental defense for students at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, Chattanooga State, University of the South at Sewanee, Covenant College, Southern Adventist University, Lee University, Bryan College, Miller-Motte College and other Tennessee institutions of higher education.
A college campus is not a safe place to make juvenile mistakes
It used to be that college was a time when young people could make minor mistakes, make amends, and move on with their lives. That isn’t the case now. Some consequences are required by law.
For example, a violation of your school’s drug policy could not only result in discipline but also affect your eligibility for federal financial aid. Then, if the state of Tennessee also prosecutes, you could face criminal penalties including jail time, fines, probation, etc.
Things are even worse for those accused of sex offenses (“Title IX violations”). Campus rape is a real problem, and colleges and universities around the country are cracking down. They may not offer much in the way of due process before handing out a punishment or kicking you off campus.
If Tennessee prosecutes you for a sex offense and you are convicted, you could spend time in prison and have to register as a sex offender.
A campus accusation could mean serious trouble, and the consequences could last for the rest of your life.
Get effective representation if you are accused of a campus crime such as:
- Underage drinking, public drunkenness or another alcohol-related offense
- Possession or use of a Fake ID
- Possession or sale of drugs or paraphernalia
- Disorderly conduct
- Breaking and entering, burglary
- Sex offenses
You have the right to due process and a vigorous defense
You may have made mistakes, but that does not mean you shouldn’t defend yourself. You may even feel guilty, but not everything we regret should be treated as a crime.
There may be a wide gap between what happened and what you’re being accused of in court. You owe it to yourself to address those accusations effectively.
An attorney can help by explaining the law and what to expect, investigating the case thoroughly, and by setting out your options clearly.
Don’t listen to college administrators who urge you not to bring in a lawyer. They are charged with protecting the best interest of the college, not you.