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Penn State student accused of rape acquitted of all charges by Centre County jury.
On August 2, 2018, after a two-day trial, a Centre County jury acquitted a former Penn State student of all charges relating to an alleged 2014 sexual assault of another student.
During the trial, Shubin attacked the accuser’s credibility, the Penn State University’s internal disciplinary process, and highlighted deficiencies in the University’s police investigation, including the Penn State Police Department’s failure to send critical and potentially exculpatory forensic evidence to a lab for testing. Prior to trial, Shubin moved to suppress the University’s disciplinary reports citing inappropriate collusion between the University’s police and its Office of Student Conduct investigator which violated the student’s constitutional rights.
Shubin filed a federal civil rights lawsuit against the University arguing that the disciplinary process it used to suspend the student, referred to as “John Doe”, violated his right to due process. Less than three weeks after the criminal acquittal, United State Federal District Court Judge Matthew Brann wrote: “In this court’s view, the investigative model’s virtual embargo on the panel’s ability to assess that credibility raises constitutional concerns . . .”
Shubin previously sued Penn State on behalf of a Syrian student who the university suspended using the same problematic disciplinary process. In that case, the court issued an injunction requiring the University to immediately readmit the Syrian student (who would have been forced to leave the country and return to Syria where his life would have been jeopardized) and expunge the disciplinary contact.
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If you need legal representation regarding a sexual assault case at your post secondary college or university, contact Andrew Shubin today.