Sexual Assault & Sex Offense Policy & Reporting Procedure
Cleveland State Community College will not tolerate sexual assault in any form. A student charged with sexual assault can be prosecuted under Tennessee criminal statutes and disciplined under the campus code of student conduct. Even if the criminal justice authorities choose not to prosecute, the campus can pursue disciplinary action.
The college uses the following methods to educate the college community about sexual offense prevention:
- Counseling brochures designed to inform students of existing on- and off-campus counseling, mental health and other student services for victims of sexual offenses.
- Lectures open to all students and employees
- Posters on campus bulletin boards
- Other activities sponsored by student organizations
Students, faculty and staff should report all crimes so that an investigation can be made to determine if any pattern of recurring crime can be determined. If a reported crime is considered a threat, alert posters are published and posted throughout campus as a form of direct communication in order to maintain a well informed campus environment.
Reporting a Sexual Offense
Cleveland State Community College will not tolerate any acts of domestic violence, dating violence, or stalking. ANYONE who knows of any incident that fits the definitions of these crimes needs to report it to Campus Police immediately. The definitions of domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking are as follows:
Stalking- Stalking is the willful course of conduct involving repeated or continuing harassment of another individual that would cause a reasonable person to feel terrorized, frightened, intimidated, threatened, harassed, or molested, and that actually causes the accuser to feel terrorized, frightened, intimidated, threatened, harassed, or molested. Harassment means conduct directed toward the accuser that includes, but is not limited to, repeated or continuing unconsented contact that would cause a reasonable person to suffer emotional distress, and that actually causes the accuser to suffer emotional distress. Harassment does not include constitutionally protected activity or conduct that serves a legitimate purpose. TCA 39-17-315
Sexual Assault-The nonconsensual sexual contact with the accuser by the accused, or the accused by the accuser when force or coercion is used to accomplish the act, the sexual contact is accomplished without the consent of the accuser, and the accused knows or has reason to know at the time of the contact that the accuser did not or could not consent. Sexual contact includes, but is not limited to, the intentional touching of the accuser’s, the accused’s, or any other person’s intimate parts, or the intentional touching of the clothing covering the immediate area of the accuser’s, the accused’s, or any other person’s intimate parts, if that intentional touching can be reasonably construed as being for the purpose of sexual arousal or gratification.
Domestic Violence-Violence against a person when the accuser and accused:
- Are current or former spouses;
- Live together or have lived together;
- Are related by blood or adoption
- Are related or were formally related by marriage; or,
- Are adult or minor children of a person in a relationship described above.
Domestic violence includes, but is not limited to,
- Inflicting, or attempting to inflict physical injury on the accuser by other than accidental means;
- Placing the accuser in fear of physical harm;
- Physical restraint;
- Malicious damage to the personal property of the accuser, including inflicting, or attempting to inflict physical injury on any animal owned, possessed, leased, kept, or held by the accuser; or,
- Placing the accuser in fear of physical harm to any animal owned, possessed, leased, kept, or held by the accuser. TCA 36-3-601
Dating Violence-Violence against a person when the accuser and accused are dating, or who have dated, or who have had a sexual relationship. “Dating” and “dated” do not include fraternization between two (2) individuals solely in a business or non-romantic social context. Violence includes, but is not necessarily limited to,
- Inflicting, or attempting to inflict, physical injury on the accuser by other than accidental means,
- Placing the accuser in fear of physical harm,
- Physical restraint,
- Malicious damage to the personal property of the accuser, including inflicting, or attempting to inflict, physical injury on any animal owned, possessed, leased, kept, or held by the accuser; or,
- Placing a victim in fear of physical harm to any animal owned, possessed, leased, kept, or held by the accuser. TCA 36-3-601 (5) (c).
For the purposes of the above terms, consent is defined as the following:
Consent-An informed decision, freely given, made through mutually understandable words or actions that indicate a willingness to participate in mutually agreed upon sexual activity. Consent cannot be given by an individual who is asleep, unconscious; or mentally or physically incapacitated, either through the effect of drugs or alcohol or for any other reason; or, is under duress, threat, coercion, or force. Past consent does not imply future consent. Silence or an absence of resistance does not imply consent. Consent can be withdrawn at any time.
Anyone who has knowledge of any of these crimes needs to inform Campus Police immediately!
If a rape/sexual offense occurs on the main campus, contact one of the Sexual Offense Management Team members listed below. Off-campus staff names are provided as well.
Sexual Offense Management Team:
Dr. C. Michael Stokes, Ext. 211
Vice-President for Student Services
George L. Mathis Student Center
Patty Weaver, Ext. 462
Director of the Athens and
Mark Wilson, Ext. 453
Director of the ACCESS Center
George L. Mathis Student Center
Suzanne Bayne, Ext. 743
Recruiting and Enrollment Office
George L. Mathis Student Center
Campus Police will do a preliminary interview and give direction on how to proceed. If the rape/sexual offense occurs at an off-campus site, contact the site director and they will call Campus Police on the main campus for instructions on how to proceed. Campus Police will assist you in notifying local police of any campus offenses if you choose to do so. Victims have the option to notify or not notify law enforcement.
When a rape/sexual offense is reported, the college will make every effort to see that the victim is offered both medical and psychological care as well as information about prosecuting the suspect through both criminal and college disciplinary channels.
A victim of any form of sexual offense is encouraged to seek appropriate medical assistance. If immediate medical attention is warranted, the victim should be transported to a hospital emergency room. It is important that the victim seek medical attention in order to assure his/her well being and to ensure that any evidence is preserved as possible proof of a criminal sexual offense in the event that criminal charges are pursued.
The federal Campus Sex Crimes Prevention Act and the Tennessee College and University Campus Sex Crimes Prevention Act of 2002 require that whenever a sex offender becomes enrolls as a student or volunteers at an institution of higher education in the state of Tennessee, he or she must complete or update the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (TBI) sexual offender registration/monitoring form and deliver it to TBI headquarters in Nashville. As defined in section 40-39-102 of the Tennessee Code, a “sexual offender means a person who is, or has been, convicted in this state of committing a sexual offense or who is, or has been, convicted in another state or another country, or who is or has been convicted in a federal or military court, of committing an act which would have constituted a sexual offense if it had been committed in this state. A “sexual offense” means the commission of acts including but not limited to aggravated and statutory rape, sexual battery, sexual exploitation of a minor, aggravated prostitution and kidnapping.
Both acts designate certain information concerning a registered sexual offender as public information and therefore amend and supercede the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and other federal and state laws that previously prohibited the disclosure of such personal information. Since the laws require the publication of information pertaining to sexual offenders enrolled or volunteering at an educational institution, said publication does not constitute grounds for a grievance or complaint under institutional or Tennessee Board of Regents policies or procedures.
In compliance with the federal Campus Sex Crimes Prevention Act and the Tennessee College and University Campus Sex Crimes Prevention Act of 2002, members of the campus community may obtain the most recent information received from the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (TBI) concerning sex offenders enrolled or volunteering at this institution at the Office of the Vice President of Finance and Administration. Information is also available on the TBI’s website listing of sex offenders located on the internet at https://www.tn.gov/tbi/section/tennessee-sex-offender-registry