State and Federal Law
Several laws pertain to criminal sexual misconduct and interpersonal misconduct, and are listed below. The excerpts provided on this page are not intended to be an exhaustive description or list of laws pertaining to sexual misconduct, inappropriate or criminal sexual behavior or interpersonal misconduct. Click on the links below to jump to each section.
Sexual assault includes rape, statutory rape, rape in concert, sodomy, oral copulation and penetration of the vagina or anal opening by any foreign object.
Rape is an act of sexual intercourse accomplished with a person not the spouse of the perpetrator under any of the following circumstances:
1. Where a person is incapable, because of a mental disorder or developmental or physical disability, of giving legal consent and this is known or reasonably should be known to the person committing the act
2. Where it is accomplished against a person’s will by means of force, violence, duress, menace or fear of immediate and unlawful bodily injury on the person or another
3. Where a person is prevented from resisting by any intoxicating or anesthetic substance, or any controlled substance, and this condition was known, or reasonably should have been known, by the accused
4. Where a person is at the time unconscious of the nature of the act, and this is known to the accused
As used in this paragraph, “unconscious of the nature of the act” means incapable of resisting because the victim meets one of the following conditions:
(A) Was unconscious or asleep.
(B) Was not aware, knowing, perceiving or cognizant that the act occurred.
(C) Was not aware, knowing, perceiving or cognizant of the essential characteristics of the act due to the perpetrator’s fraud in fact.
(D) Was not aware, knowing, perceiving or cognizant of the essential characteristics of the act due to the perpetrator’s fraudulent representation that the sexual penetration served a professional purpose when it served no professional purpose.
5. Where a person submits under the belief that the person committing the act is the victim’s spouse, and this belief is induced by any artifice, pretense or concealment practiced by the accused, with the intent to induce the belief
6. Where the act is accomplished against the victim’s will by threatening to retaliate in the future against the victim or any other person, and there is a reasonable possibility that the perpetrator will execute the threat
As used in this paragraph, “threatening to retaliate,” means a threat to kidnap or falsely imprison, or to inflict extreme pain, serious bodily injury or death.
California law also states that “any sexual penetration, however slight, is sufficient to complete the crime” (Code 263) and defines both marital rape (Code 262) and “statutory rape” (Code 261.5).
Though laws vary from state to state, intercourse in which consent was not obtained or was obtained under coercive conditions will usually be considered rape.
In prosecutions under Section 261, 262, 286, 288a, or 289, in which consent is at issue, "consent" shall be defined to mean positive cooperation in act or attitude pursuant to an exercise of free will. The person must act freely and voluntarily and have knowledge of the nature of the act or transaction involved. A current or previous dating or marital relationship shall not be sufficient to constitute consent where consent is at issue in a prosecution under Section 261, 262, 286, 288a, or 289. Nothing in this section shall affect the admissibility of evidence or the burden of proof on the issue of consent. In prosecutions under Section 261, 262, 286, 288a, or 289, in which consent is at issue, evidence that the victim suggested, requested or otherwise communicated to the defendant that the defendant use a condom or other birth control device, without additional evidence of consent, is not sufficient to constitute consent.
Excerpts from Section 646.9 of the California Penal Code:
Any person who willfully, maliciously and repeatedly follows or willfully and maliciously harasses another person and who makes 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 is guilty of the crime of stalking, punishable by:
1. Imprisonment in a county jail for not more than one year, or
2. A fine of not more than $1,000, or
3. by both that fine and imprisonment, or by imprisonment in the state prison.
For the purposes of this section, “harasses” means engages in a knowing and willful course of conduct directed at a specific person that seriously alarms, annoys, torments or terrorizes the person, and that serves no legitimate purpose.
Excerpts from Section 13700 of the California Penal Code and 6211 of the California Family Code:
“Domestic Violence” means abuse committed against an adult or a minor who is a spouse, former spouse, cohabitant, former cohabitant, person with whom the suspect has had a child or is having, has had a dating or engagement relationship, a child of a party or a child who is the subject of an action under the Uniform Parentage Act or any other person related by consanguinity or affinity within the second degree.
For the purposes of this subdivision, “cohabitant” means two unrelated adult persons living together for a substantial period of time, resulting in permanency of relationship. Factors that may determine whether persons are cohabiting include, but are not limited to:
1. Sexual relations between the parties while sharing the same living quarters.
2. Sharing of income or expenses.
3. Joint use or ownership of property.
4. Whether the parties hold themselves out as husband and wife.
5. The continuity of the relationship.
6. The length of the relationship.
Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 is a federal civil rights law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in any education program or activity that receives federal funding.
Under Title IX, LMU has a responsibility to respond promptly and equitably to address Sexual Harassment, sexual violence and interpersonal misconduct. If LMU knows or reasonably should know about Sexual Harassment, sexual violence or interpersonal misconduct that creates a hostile environment, LMU must take action to eliminate the Sexual Harassment, sexual violence or relationship misconduct, prevent its recurrence and address its effects.
LMU encourages prompt reporting of crime to Public Safety and/or law enforcement. Even if a Student elects not to file a Student Conduct Code complaint, does not request that LMU take any action on the Student’s behalf or is unable to make a report to LMU and/or law enforcement, if LMU knows or reasonably should know about possible Sexual Harassment, sexual violence or interpersonal misconduct, LMU must promptly investigate to determine what occurred and then take appropriate steps to resolve the situation. In appropriate circumstances, LMU may report crimes to law enforcement when a victim decides not to report or cannot report the crime.
A criminal investigation into allegations of Sexual Harassment or sexual violence does not relieve LMU of its duty under Title IX to resolve complaints promptly and equitably.
LMU has a Title IX Coordinator, Sara Trivedi, EEO Officer in the Human Resources Department, who can be reached at (310) 568-6105 or email@example.com.
How do I file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights?
If you believe that Loyola Marymount University does not respond appropriately to your allegations of sexual assault, harassment, or misconduct after you have filed a report with Public Safety, Residence Life, or gone through the judicial process, you have the option to file a complaint with the Office of Civil Rights.
1. You may file a complaint in person, online or by mail.
a. In person: via telephone (877) 292-3804.
b. Online: via email: firstname.lastname@example.org
c. By mail: write letter to: U.S. Department of Justice Civil Rights Division, 950 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., Educational Opportunities Section, PHB, Washington, D.C. 20530.
2. For more information about filing a complaint, please visit notalone.gov.
The Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act (also known as the Clery Act) is a federal law that requires all colleges and universities in the United States to disclose information about crimes committed on and around their campuses. Enforced by the U.S. Department of Education, the law requires all institutions that receive federal funding to do the following:
- Publish an Annual Security Report (ASR) by October 1 of the calendar year, documenting campus crime data from the past three years and existing policies and procedures regarding sexual assault.
- Maintain a public crime log with the nature, date, time and general location of each crime.
- Disclose crime statistics on campus in public areas regarding a variety of crimes, including sex offenses.
- Issue timely warnings about Clery Act crimes which pose a serious or ongoing threat to students and employees.
- Devise an emergency response, notification and testing policy.
- Compile and report fire data to the federal government and publish an annual fire safety report.
- Enact policies and procedures to handle reports of missing students.
*adapted from the Clery Center for Security on Campus
In April 2014, the White House launched NotAlone.Gov, a website to house their nationwide campaign on campus sexual assault, which provides information for students and universities alike on campus sexual assault prevention and response. The website is a useful and comprehensive resource for the latest updates in the nationwide response to the growing problem of sexual assault on college campuses.
Visit notalone.gov for more information about the White House initiative.