Give to WPI

Rights of Individual Members of the WPI Community

Section A

  1. The rights of the individual will be of paramount concern where not inconsistent with the goals of the university and the rights of other members of the WPI community.
  2. Students are entitled to freedom from unauthorized search and unreasonable invasions of their privacy regarding both their person and property. Evidence obtained by an unauthorized search and unreasonable invasion shall not be admissible against them. It is recognized that the university setting does not provide the safeguards of warrants, magistrates, oaths, etc., that are available to citizens in general. Evidence obtained by a search and seizure shall not be admissible unless the authorized WPI official can demonstrate that he/she had a reasonable cause to believe that the code had been violated, that the student charged in fact violated the code, and that this particular evidence of the violation was present on the student's person or in his/her living quarters. For this purpose, an authorized WPI official does not include a student either as a principal or agent. A student officer or counselor may and should recognize, however, that the preceding rule is not intended to interfere with the responsibility for the maintaining of good order. The evidence obtained by an otherwise authorized and reasonable search and seizure shall not be admissible unless the student was present at the time of the search and seizure or circumstances clearly dictate the necessity of the search and seizure without his/her presence.
  3. Judicial Advocates are trained and educated about the judicial system on campus and serve as a confidential resource and consultant for students regarding the judicial process. Contact information for the Judicial Advocates is available from the case officer.

Section B

  1. The accused is assumed not responsible until proven responsible, or accepts responsibility.
  2. The parties of the hearing shall receive sufficient personal, written advance notification informing them of the complaint, time, date and place of the hearing, and their minimum rights as observed by the campus judicial system.
  3. The accused may remain silent or submit only a written statement or response to the complaint, call witnesses and present evidence, or testify.
  4. The accused may be assisted in preparing and presenting their defense by an advisor of their choice from within the immediate WPI community. The advisor may not ask, answer or be asked questions by any party to the hearing. An advisor for the plaintiff or the accused may not also serve as a witness in the case. Persons from outside the immediate WPI community such as lawyers, the public, the press, parents and alumni may not attend hearings, except as noted below. Under extraordinary circumstances (as determined by the case officer and chief justice) the accused may also be accompanied to the hearing by legal counsel. The primary purpose of allowing legal counsel into the hearing is to safeguard the accused's rights at pending criminal proceedings. The counsel's function shall be limited to advising the accused on whether or not to answer questions and on what the accused should not say so as to safeguard him/her from self-incrimination. When the accused has professional legal counsel, the board may also secure legal counsel. The board may also permit the plaintiff to be accompanied by legal counsel. The request to have legal counsel present at a hearing shall be made sufficiently in advance of the hearing (no later than five (5) days before the hearing) that such a request may be thoroughly considered, and if approved, other parties to the hearing may be offered the opportunity to obtain similar service. The request shall also include the name and address of legal counsel.
  5. The accused has the right to rebut testimony or challenge its validity, relevance, or admissibility. In such cases where the accused exercises his/her right of silence, he/she may not be cross-examined. But if the accused testifies, or witnesses testify on his/her behalf, they must submit to cross examination.
  6. In certain cases, when a serious complaint has been brought by an individual who is either unable or unwilling to act as a plaintiff, the university reserves the right to serve as plaintiff to adjudicate the case. In these instances, the case officer will consult with the chief justice of the Campus Hearing Board to determine the appropriateness of exercising this option. The case officer and chief justice will also identify an appropriate representative from the university to serve as plaintiff.
  7. An audio recording of the Campus Hearing Board proceedings is made during each hearing. The university will retain the recording for 60 days, after which time it will be destroyed. The plaintiff or the accused may request a copy of the recording within the 60 days.
  8. The accused is entitled to notification of the board's findings.
  9. The parties of the hearing may challenge the appropriateness or impartiality of any board member.
  10. The accused may not be prosecuted again by a WPI judicial authority for an offense for which they have been previously tried before the Campus Hearing Board.
  11. The accused may petition for a rehearing based on evidence or testimony that could not have been obtained at the time of the hearing. Such petition must indicate the character of the testimony or evidence newly available and the manner in which the original decision might be changed. Petitions are submitted to the case officer, and will be reviewed with the appropriate staff member or with the chief justice (in cases where the Campus Hearing Board has heard the case) to determine whether and to what extent a rehearing in the matter shall be accorded.
  12. The parties of the hearing may choose between a public or private hearing. One vote for a private hearing will pre-empt all other requests for a public one. Attendance at open hearings is limited to members of the immediate WPI community, e.g., students, faculty and staff. Exceptions to this policy must be requested in advance through the case officer and are generally limited to material witnesses. Attendance at a closed hearing is limited to the plaintiff and accused, their advisors, and witnesses while they are giving testimony.
  13. When more than one individual is charged with the same violation(s), a joint hearing will be scheduled. The university reserves the right to schedule individual hearings
 
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