Due process on college campuses has become passé, and even an impediment to justice — at least according to sexual assault activists. But police officers like Susan Riseling may be giving activists a leg up.
Riseling is the chief of police and associate vice chancellor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and recently told a conference audience that using the records from campus sexual assault hearings could be beneficial to police investigations.
“It’s Title IX, not Miranda,” Riseling said. “Use what you can.”
When a student is accused of sexual assault on a college campus, they’re often given vague descriptions of the charge against them — which may have occurred years earlier. …
They face a system that has been shifted against them, where an accusation is all that’s needed to brand them a rapist for life and kick them out of school. There is no due process in campus hearings — no rules of evidence, cross-examination or right to be represented by an attorney. They’re not even told that anything said in the hearing can and will be used against them in a court of law.
You may recognize that last sentence to be the Miranda warning given to people when they’re arrested. It’s been around since the 1960s, when a Supreme Court decision ruled that a suspect in custody must be made aware of their rights.
But no such rights exist on a college campus, allowing police officers like Riseling to use the information gathered by such means against accused students.