Attorney: Banks case shows why Butte College VP should give up Title IX duties

Sep 22, 2014 6:37 PM by News Staff

An attorney who has filed a civil rights complaint against Butte College for its handling of a 2012 rape accusation involving its students says the recent revelation that it allowed a defendant in an ongoing rape case to play on Butte's football team is further proof that the college's Title IX officer needs to be removed.

Attorney Jim McCabe, a Durham resident who works for a Bay Area law firm, filed the complaint with the Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights last year, alleging, among other things, that the college conducted an insufficient and biased investigation of a female student's rape accusation against another student.

One of the remedies listed in the complaint is the removal of Vice President for Student Services Allen Renville, who also serves as Butte Title IX officer and is in charge of investigating claims of sexual violence on campus.

Title IX is a law passed in 1972 that requires gender equality for boys and girls in every educational program that receives federal funding. Most people think Title IX applies only to sports, but it also includes access to higher education, career education, employment, learning environment, math and science and sexual harassment.

Then two weeks ago, as Action News Now first reported, it was discovered that 20-year-old Brandon Banks was attending classes and playing football at Butte less than a year after being kicked out of Vanderbilt University following his arrest on suspicion of raping an unconscious student at an on-campus dormitory in June 2103. Banks and three other students still stand charged of multiple felony counts.

McCabe told Action News Now that while allowing Banks to attend to Butte is not a violation of Title IX, recruiting a known defendant in a sex crime case could be seen as a violation, which McCabe said includes protecting students against the potential of a hostile campus environment.

"It was a bad idea ... and that just reinforces our stance about Mr. Renville,'' McCabe said.

Contacted Monday, a Butte College spokesperson declined to comment on McCabe's new call for the removal of Renville from Title IX duties citing pending litigation involving McCabe's law firm.

Meanwhile, Banks has been dismissed from the Butte College football team as he awaits another court date in Nashville in October.

As for the 2012 rape accusation, criminal charges were never filed and Renville found that there was insufficient evidence for disciplinary action, a decision which is now under appeal with the Office for Civil Rights.


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