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Violation of UT's Student Code of Conduct

If you are a college or graduate student at the University of Tampa, an accusation that you committed a crime might come with a host of serious consequences. These consequences can arise regardless of whether the incident happened on campus or off campus. You can face a disciplinary action regardless of whether you were actually arrested for a crime or received a notice to appear in court.

After a criminal accusation, not only will you face the criminal charges in court, but you might also face a disciplinary action on campus. The disciplinary action is triggered if the University of Tampa's Office of Student Conduct finds out about an incident involving a violation of the student code of conduct.

Even for an incident that occurred off campus, the local police departments in and around Tampa, including the Tampa Police Department (TPD) or the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office (HCSO) might forward a copy of your criminal report affidavit to the Office of Student Conduct at the University of Tampa. In fact, anyone can report a complaint of student misconduct in writing directly to the Office of Student Conduct.

After the complaint is made, you will receive a “Notification Letter” or “Notice of Required Incident Review Meeting with Student Conduct” via email from the Coordinator of Student Conduct at the University of Tampa. You need to act quickly because you might only be notified one business day prior to the scheduled incident review via your University of Tampa email account.

If you receive notice of the incident review meeting, then do to things immediately. First, tell your parents or anyone else helping you pay for your education. The disciplinary action comes with consequences that might last long after the criminal case is resolved. Your family can help you make some important decisions about how to deal with the accusations.

Second, hire an experienced criminal defense attorney who can help you fight for the best result in the criminal case and during the initial incident review meeting or any disciplinary action at UT's Office of Student Conduct.

Attorney for UT Students with a Conduct Code Violation

Representing yourself at the incident review meeting or any disciplinary hearing that follows that meeting is not a good "do-it-yourself" project. Being kicked out of the dorms or student housing might be very expensive. Being expelled from the University of Tampa is even more expensive. We are familiar with a wide range of student conduct code violations including allegations of sexual misconduct or relationship violence investigations at UT.

Any action taken by the Office of Student Conduct at the University of Tampa might become a permanent part of your academic record that will follow you if you transfer to another college or university, including graduate school.

Depending on how the accusation is resolved, you might also be required to disclose any disciplinary action taken by the University of Tampa if you plan on obtaining a state-issued license to become a health-care profession (such as a nurse or physician), teacher or certified educator, or attorney. You might also be required to disclose the action if you plan on joining a law enforcement agency or becoming a member of the military. If you are an international student, you might also face immigration consequences if you are not a U.S. Citizen.

For all of these reasons, you need an experienced criminal defense attorney focused on representing college students to represent you during each stage of the case.

Call us at 813-250-0500.


The Notice Letter for the Incident Review Meeting at UT

If your name is listed in an incident report that alleges that a violation of the student code of conduct occurred, then the Coordinator of Student Conduct at the University of Tampa will send you an email that acts as a “Notification Letter” or “Notice of Required Incident Review Meeting with Student Conduct.”

The Office of Student Conduct will review the incident report and assign a violation or violations of university policy. Many of these violations concern a student conduct violation for being in possession of drug paraphernalia or drugs. Based on the alleged violations of misconduct, you will be scheduled for an incident review meeting in accordance with the Student Conduct Procedures listed in the Student Code of Conduct. 

During the initial review meeting, you will be used to discuss the aforementioned incident report and assigned violations. The meeting is mandatory regardless of your perceived involvement. Please note accommodations for iterative meeting times are only made with considering to your current academic schedule. 

During the incident review meeting, you will be able to review the incident report and the assigned violation(s) with your incident reviewer. At this meeting, you will be able to discuss any questions you may have about the Student Conduct process with your incident reviewer. You are encouraged to review the relevant policies of the Student Code of Conduct prior to your schedule incident review.

At the conclusion of your incident review meeting, you will complete a form indicating responsibility for any assigned violations or request a conduct board be established to determine responsibilities for any assigned violation(s). If you fail to attend your incident review meeting, you may be referred directly to the appropriate hearing board for adjudication of the assigned violations. 

Representation at the Individual Hearing Board

The student has the right to due process of law. Many of the procedures used at UT violate basic due process requirements, but if the student doesn't raise the proper objections then they will be told they are not permitted to have an attorney assist them at each stage of the action. 

An attorney can play an important role in helping the student present information on their own behalf at a hearing board including witnesses or written witness statements concerning the incident. An attorney can also help the student decide whether to testify about what occurred or remain silent. Keep in mind that the hearing board might make a negative inference if you choose not to answer questions or provide information.

An attorney can also help the student prepare questions for anyone providing information to the hearing board. The questions are directed to the hearing board advisor, but if the hearing board advisor improperly excludes the questions, then that issue can be preserved for an appeal. Basic due process requires the University of Tampa (UT) to allow the student to be assisted by an attorney during the hearing board process if the proper objections are raised.

An attorney can also help you obtain a copy of the official verbatim record from the hearing maintained by the University of Tampa if you choose to file an appeal of an adverse action in court.


Additional Resources

UT Student Code of Conduct - Visit the website of the University of Tampa (UT) to find out more about the student code procedures for Individual Students and Registered Student Organizations. Special procedures apply to allegations of sexual misconduct.

College Students in Tampa Arrested for DUI - Read more about the special issues that arise after a college student is arrested for DUI in or around the University of Tampa or the University of South Florida. Many of these cases involve a saturation patrol or DUI checkpoint on the college campus.


Finding a Lawyer for the Incident Review Meeting at the Unversity of Tampa

The attorneys at the Sammis Law Firm often accompany students to the initial incident review meeting. We can help you make decisions about either accepting responsibility for the assigned violation or requesting a conduct board hearing.

We can help you present information on your own behalf at the incident review meeting. It might not be in your best interest to accept responsibility at an incident review meeting. If you accept responsibility at the incident review meeting, then you will waive any procedural appeal rights upon accepting responsibility.

We can help you present information to the incident reviewer about the reasons that the allegations of misconduct should be dismissed by the Office of Student Conduct at the University of Tampa. The Office of Student Conduct might reserve the right to reassign any dismissed violations if new information becomes known regarding the alleged misconduct that was not known to the incident reviewer or the Office of Student Conduct at the time of the initial incident review.

The attorneys at the Sammis Law Firm represent students from local colleges and universities including the University of Tampa (UT) and the University of South Florida (USF) after an arrest.

Don't face the "incident reviewer" or conduct board alone. Let us put our experience to work for you. Call 813-250-0500.

Call 813-250-0500.


This article was last updated on Friday, July 6, 2018.