September 2005

9.21.17…..When the charged student denies responsibility; the burden of proof shall rest upon the person(s) bringing the charges. The standard for this proof shall be clear and convincing evidence more likely than not.
Rationale: This describes the degree of confidence the hearing panel or judicial officer must have regarding the occurrence of the violation. Stoner’s model code states that the standard of “substantial evidence” (33% sure) or “more likely than not”(51% sure) is the standard used at most colleges and universities. University Counsel Saccoccio recommends and the Committee voted to replace “clear and convincing”(66% sure) with “more likely than not”) for the following reason.  We must balance the rights of the accused with the rights of community members who expect a safe and peaceful environment in which to pursue their education. If the information presented at a hearing results in a reasonable conclusion that, at minimum, it is more likely than not that a policy violation occurred, sanctioning for the violation is in the interest of community wholeness.