Prohibited Conduct

The following examples of sexual misconduct are intended to guide students with regard to what types of behavior may result in disciplinary action under this policy.  The list below is not exhaustive and the College reserves its right to institute disciplinary procedures for sexual misconduct that does not necessarily fall within the specific definitions below.

When the terms “nonconsensual” and “without consent” are used in the definitions of prohibited conduct below, it means that the Accused did not receive consent to engage in the particular conduct.  As stated above in the “Definitions” section of this Policy, consent CANNOT be obtained from a person who is:  (1) a minor (age 17 and under); (2) has a mental disorder or developmental or physical disability that renders him or her incapable of giving knowing consent; (3) is unconscious or so disoriented that the person is incapable of exercising the judgment required whether to consent; or (4) is incapacitated from alcohol or other drugs, and this condition was known or reasonably should have been known by the Accused. “Incapacitated” means intoxicated to the point that the person is incapable of exercising the judgment required whether to consent.

Bullying: Repeated sex- or gender-based severe, aggressive behavior likely to intimidate or intentionally hurt, control or diminish another person, physically or mentally (that is not speech or conduct otherwise protected by the 1st amendment).

Dating Violence:  “Dating Violence” means abuse committed against an adult or a minor with whom the suspect is having or has had a dating or engagement relationship. It is the same as Domestic Violence (Cal. Penal Code § 13700), but involves violence that occurs within a “dating relationship” which means frequent, intimate associations primarily characterized by the expectation of affection or sexual involvement independent of financial considerations (Cal. Family Code § 6210). When used in this Policy, dating violence and abuse will be included within the term domestic violence and abuse.

Domestic Violence:  “Domestic violence” means abuse committed against an adult or a minor who is a spouse, former spouse, cohabitant, former cohabitant, or person with whom the suspect has had a child or is having or has had a dating or engagement relationship. For purposes of this subdivision, “cohabitant” means two unrelated adult persons living together for a substantial period of time, resulting in some permanency of relationship (Cal. Penal Code §13700).

False Reports:  Because the College takes each report seriously, it will not tolerate the filing of false reports. If a good-faith complaint results in a finding of not responsible, the party reporting will not be held responsible. If a person is found to have filed a false report with malicious intent, it is a violation of College Policy and the Code of Student Rights and Responsibilities.  It may also violate criminal statues and civil defamation.

Harm to Others: Words or conduct made on the basis of sex or gender that threaten or endanger the health and safety of any person, including physical or verbal abuse, threats, intimidation, and/or harassment. Intimidation is defined as implied threats or acts that cause an unreasonable fear of harm in another. Harm to others may also include unsuccessful attempts to commit non-consensual sexual contact and  sexual assault.

Hazing: An act committed on the basis of sex or gender that is likely to endanger the mental or physical health or safety of a student or cause social ostracism to any person within the College community for the purpose of initiation, admission into, affiliation with, or as a condition for continued membership in a group or organization. The express or implied consent of the alleged victim will not be a defense. Apathy or acquiescence in the presence of hazing are not neutral acts; they are violations of this rule.

Noncompliance with Sanctions or Corrective Actions: Failure to follow through on conduct sanctions/responsive/corrective actions that were imposed as a result of a violation of the Sexual Misconduct Policy by the date specified, whether by refusal, neglect or any other reason, may result in additional sanctions/responsive/corrective actions and/or suspension, expulsion and/or termination from the College and may be noted on a student’s official transcript. A suspension will only be lifted when compliance is achieved to the satisfaction of the Title IX Coordinator.

Non-Consensual Sexual Contact:  Any intentional sexual touching without consent from the person being touched, however slight, by a person upon another person, with or without an object.  Sexual touching includes any bodily contact with the breasts, groin, genitals, buttocks, mouth, or any other bodily orifice of another individual, or any other bodily contact in a sexual manner. 

Retaliation: Any form of intimidation, threats, or harassment by the individual accused of misconduct or by friends, family or other persons acting in support of or on behalf of that individual or who are sympathetic to the accused. Acts of retaliation are, by themselves, cause for disciplinary action and should be reported immediately.  Retaliation occurs when any member of the College community retaliates against any person who has filed an informal or formal complaint or sought advice on the process described in this Policy. Retaliation includes retaliation against anyone who has participated in any manner in the process, including but not limited to  the complainant, respondent, alleged victim, and all witnesses. 

Sexual Assault:  Sexual assault is a broad term that covers a large range of nonconsensual inappropriate and/or unlawful conduct, including rape.  California law defines rape as nonconsensual sexual intercourse that involves the use or threat of force, violence, or immediate and unlawful bodily injury or threats of future retaliation and duress (California Penal Code: Sections 261, 261.5, 262, 286, 288a, 289, and 243.4).  Other examples of sexual assault include the following nonconsensual acts: forced oral copulation (oral-genital contact); rape by a foreign object (forced penetration by a foreign object, including a finger); and more severe sexual battery (the unwanted touching of an intimate part of another person or the clothing covering the immediate area of those parts, or forcing a person to touch another’s intimate parts for the purpose of sexual arousal, sexual gratification or sexual abuse) than conduct that would be considered non-consensual sexual contact defined above.

Sexual Exploitation: Taking non-consensual or abusive sexual advantage of another individual for his/her own advantage or benefit, or to benefit or advantage anyone other than the one being exploited. Examples of sexual exploitation include, but are not limited to:

  • Invasion of sexual privacy;
  • Prostituting another student;
  • Non-consensual video, photography, or audiotaping of sexual activity;
  • Non-consensual distributing of intimate images;
  • Going beyond the boundaries of consent (such as letting your friends hide in the closet to watch you having consensual sex);
  • Engaging in voyeurism;
  • Knowingly transmitting an STI or HIV to another student;
  • Exposing one’s genitals in non-consensual circumstances; inducing another to expose their genitals;
  • Sexually based stalking and/or bullying may also be forms of sexual exploitation.

Sexual Harassment:  Unwelcomed, gender-based verbal or physical conduct that is sufficiently severe, pervasive and objectively offensive that unreasonably interferes with, limits, or deprives someone of the ability to participate in or benefit from the College’s educational program based on power differentials (quid pro quo), the creation of a hostile environment, or retaliation.  Examples include: an attempt to coerce an unwilling person into a sexual relationship; to repeatedly subject a person to egregious, unwanted sexual attention; to punish a refusal to comply; to condition a benefit on submitting to sexual advances; sexual assault; domestic or dating violence, stalking; gender-based bullying.

There are three types of sexual harassment:

1. Hostile environment includes any situation in which there is harassing conduct that is sufficiently severe, pervasive/persistent and patently/objectively offensive that it alters the conditions of education or employment, from both a subjective (the alleged victim’s) and an objective (reasonable person’s) viewpoint. The determination of whether an environment is “hostile” must be based on a combination of any of these circumstances. These circumstances include:

  • Frequency of the conduct;
  • Nature and severity of the conduct;
  • Whether the conduct was physically threatening;
  • Whether the conduct was humiliating;
  • Effect of the conduct on the alleged victim’s mental or emotional state;
  • Whether the conduct was directed at more than one person;
  • Whether the conduct arose in the context of other discriminatory conduct;
  • Whether the conduct unreasonably interfered with the alleged victim’s educational or work performance;
  • Whether the statement is a mere utterance of an epithet which engenders offense in an employee or student, or offends by mere discourtesy or rudeness; and
  • Whether the speech or conduct deserves the protections of academic freedom or First Amendment protection

2. Quid pro quo sexual harassment:  This form of sexual harassment exists when:

  • There are unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature; and
  • Submission to or rejection of such conduct results in adverse educational or employment action.

3. Retaliatory harassment is any adverse employment or educational action taken against a person because of the person’s participation in a complaint or investigation of discrimination or sexual misconduct.

Stalking: Sex- or gender-based willful, malicious, and repeated following or willful and malicious harassment of another person or making a credible threat with the intent to place that person in reasonable fear for his or her safety, or the safety of his or her immediate family (Cal. Penal Code §646.9).  It is a pattern of behavior or conduct directed at a specific person that causes the alleged victim to fear for his or her safety or for the safety of loved ones.  Stalking behaviors include such things as unwanted telephone calls, unwanted letters or emails, unwanted or threatening gifts, threats, damage to property, physical assault, or appearing without invitation at a place of residence, school, or work.

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