As of the writing of this article there have been an estimated 8.5 million COVID-19 cases and 223,000 tragic deaths across the country. Early analysis wrongfully concluded that those under the age of 30 would be largely unaffected, but trends in college campuses across the nation have proven that wrong. Over 214,000 cases at over 1,600 universities have been traced to date. Colleges and Universities are adopting varying approaches on how to handle and halt the spread of Coronavirus, most are requiring some kind of action on the part of students. All rules on a college campus – no matter how noble their aim – carry the chance of ramifications for individual students if they are not followed.
Student Conduct Violation
Just like the varied responses to coronavirus, universities have widely varying procedures when it comes to the issue of student conduct. Here in Tallahassee, Florida State University and Florida A&M University have completely separate sets of conduct bodies with their own rules, procedures and structure. In almost all circumstances, a school may not levy substantial punishments based on conduct without first affording you a hearing. These hearings may appear similar to a trial at first glance, but they are almost designed to strip the accused of nearly all the rights a similar criminal proceeding would provide. Sometimes chance of success without an attorney is lower at a student conduct hearing when compared to a criminal courtroom.
This guideline is very clear on what the ramifications are, but it is extremely hard to discern exactly what the meaning of this rule is. The CDC currently recommends a 14-day quarantine upon a positive test. Some studies suggest that contact is safe after a 10-day quarantine. It is unclear exactly how long a person needs to quarantine after a positive test to avoid risking suspension at Florida State University. Students could potentially face suspension without the clear knowledge of how they violated the guidelines.
The University has special guidelines for football game attendance, stricter than all other activities at the university. A negative school-sponsored test is required for the ticket lottery, but there’s nothing accounting for individuals who receive a positive test after that one and still attend. There are also no listed ramifications for those who do not wear masks, sit in the designated seats, or ignore any of the other rules.
Tallahassee Student Defense Attorney
Universities are stepping up to protect students from spread of COVID-19, and they seem to be doing their best. The unfortunate reality is that it is very likely that students – rightly or wrongly – will be accused of violating guidelines and face life-altering consequences. It is very important to speak to a qualified student defense attorney if accused. Don Pumphrey and the members of the legal team at Pumphrey Law Firm have decades of experience representing students in conduct cases. They are dedicated to defending the rights of clients in any circumstance and will fight for the best possible result. Call a Tallahassee Criminal Defense Attorney today at (850) 681-7777 or send an online message today to discuss your rights during an open and free consultation with a defense lawyer in our legal team.
Attorney Don Pumphrey, Jr. is a former prosecutor, former law enforcement officer, and a successful and experienced criminal defense attorney. Don has achieved over 100 not guilty verdicts at trial and over 2,000 dismissals.