The assumption here is straight males cannot tell the truth, and their word against any other accuser is not to be trusted.
In Klocke’s case, it was his word against his homosexual accuser’s. The accuser told a UTA official–with whom he had a warm relationship–that Klocke typed a gay slur in his browser search bar during a class. Klocke’s story is that the accuser, whose name he didn’t even know until the incident occurred, made unwelcome advances toward him.
Long story short: despite a complete lack of corroborating or even circumstantial evidence, UTA’s associate director of academic integrity (I don’t even know what that title means) Daniel Moore sent Klocke a letter on May 25, 2016 (just weeks after the incident) stating that Klocke had been found responsible for harassment. Then Klocke was placed on disciplinary probation for the remainder of his time at UTA, which would be kept on his permanent disciplinary record.
As it turns out, Klocke’s time at UTA was short. Days later, he committed suicide.
Now Klocke’s father is suing UTA for not following its own Title IX procedures. Kenneth Chalken, the father’s attorney, told Watchdog.org:
“When a college violates the legal rights of a student accused of misconduct, and its own rules for addressing such a complaint, the accused student can suffer life altering consequences,” he said in an email. “The important case of Klocke v. University of Texas at Arlington illustrates just how quickly and arbitrarily a college can act, leading to the most tragic outcome from the unimaginable stress and pain that an unfairly treated, accused student can suffer. It also serves to underscore why reforms in the campus disciplinary process are so necessary, as recently recommended by the American College of Trial Lawyers, and why accountability through the judicial process may help to promote those reforms.”
The university responded with a bland statement offering “deepest condolences” and referring to the fact that the case is now in federal court, preventing further comment. The statement did maintain that “the university followed its policies and procedures.”
Based on what I read at Watchdog, that’s a specious claim. Depositions and meeting notes indicate that UTA conducted no official Title IX investigation. The complaint itself was written by Associate Vice President of Student Affairs Heather Snow, whom Klocke’s accuser sometimes referred to using her first name. Snow didn’t go through the school’s Title IX coordinator, but took over the “investigation” (as it were) herself, recruiting Moore to help pursue the matter.
At best, their effort was ham-handed. At worst it was horrific bullying. These five paragraphs paint a picture of “you’re guilty until proven innocent, and no we won’t give you a hearing.”
Moore also never told Klocke that he would not be allowed a hearing. He was never informed that Snow – who was not an impartial party – was running the show, even helping Moore determine a punishment.
Klocke was charged with violating Title IX based solely on the accusation. He was charged with two violations: physical abuse or threat thereof and a non-specific violation of the school’s anti-harassment policy. It should be noted that the accuser never claimed Klocke was physical or threatened physical harm.
By charging Klocke in this manner, UTA further violated its own policies, which state that charges are supposed to come after an investigation and hearing, and after the accused has had a chance to present witnesses in his defense.
The accuser’s report, written in whole or part by Snow, was described as “a statement of evidence” against Klocke. Klocke was not provided a list of witnesses, even though Moore’s summons letter said he would do so.
Moore’s letter informed Klocke that he could be expelled over the accusation, though UTA policy states that accused students facing such punishment have the right to a hearing (which Klocke was denied.)
If this were a case handled by an actual law enforcement agency, the investigators and prosecutors would be fired for incompetence. The prosecuting attorney would be recommended for charges and possible disbarment for an egregious violation of an accused’s rights. In fact, the entire case would have been dismissed before any action was taken.
This is yet another example of progressive ideals gone wildly wrong, with anyone possessing authority believing they can be the avatar of justice against perceived homophobia. And the underlying assumption is “of course the straight male is a homophobe.”
College students, co-workers, political comrades and friends had better watch what they say, email and text to their homosexual contacts. In this toxic environment, the word of a straight male is always suspect against the word of an accusing homosexual, or a woman, or really any victim-status minority.
You will be made to care, and tragically, Thomas Klocke’s care was too much for him to carry. I hope a federal jury finds UTA at fault and awards a billion dollars to Klocke’s family.