When students violate college or university codes of conduct or break the law, school officials could bring disciplinary proceedings against them. Some minor charges, like alcohol violations or plagiarism, may not result in a criminal charge or penalty. However, offenses like rape, sexual assault, and other violent crimes of a sexual nature could result in forthcoming criminal charges and penalties.
Facing academic and/or criminal charges as a college or university student in Fairfax can be a scary prospect. If you or a loved one is a student in the midst of school disciplinary or criminal proceedings, you need strong legal representation from a defense attorney throughout your case.
A Fairfax student defense lawyer can explain what you are charged with and could represent you at a school disciplinary hearing and at a court hearing or trial.
Some students are under the mistaken impression that school disciplinary charges and proceedings are not as serious as criminal proceedings. Nothing could be further from the truth, since a school disciplinary panel could still impose harsh penalties for a student conduct code violation.
Potential penalties might include loss of scholarship money, suspension, or even expulsion from the school. The school registrar could also note the violation on the student’s permanent record or on the student’s transcript.
Student conduct violations can also make it difficult for a student to transfer to a different college or university. Finally, a violation can make it harder for a student to gain admission to graduate school or gain entry into the workforce.
In student conduct cases, the accused student typically has the burden of proving that they did not violate the student code of conduct. The school does not typically need to show that the accused student committed the alleged violation. A Fairfax student defense lawyer could represent the accused student at a disciplinary proceeding and advocate on their behalf.
Some student conduct violations are also against state law. Consequently, if the student commits one of these violations, the college, university, or alleged victim could decide to file criminal charges against the student. These criminal proceedings are in addition to the student disciplinary proceedings which the college or university handles in-house.
The following offenses could result in criminal charges against the student, in addition to the onset of school disciplinary proceedings:
Students could still face both school disciplinary and criminal charges, even when a police officer arrests the student while they are off the college or university campus. In criminal proceedings, the Commonwealth of Virginia (i.e. the prosecution) has the burden of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.
A Fairfax student defense attorney can ensure that all of the accused student’s constitutional rights remain protected throughout the proceedings and can represent the student at criminal proceedings in court.
Student conduct proceedings and criminal charges can both have serious consequences. If you or your son or daughter is in the midst of school disciplinary proceedings – or if the Commonwealth has charged you criminally – then you need experienced legal representation in your corner.
Let a knowledgeable Fairfax student defense lawyer assist you throughout your case and help you pursue the best outcome possible.
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