1. Home
  2. A to Z Index
  3. Procedures to Responding to a Sexual Offense
  1. Home
  2. Campus Safety/Risk Management
  3. Procedures to Responding to a Sexual Offense
  1. Home
  2. Student Affairs
  3. Procedures to Responding to a Sexual Offense
  1. Home
  2. General Campus Policies
  3. Procedures to Responding to a Sexual Offense

Procedures to Responding to a Sexual Offense

Policy Author:
Student Affairs

Responsible Office/Department:
Student Affairs

Effective Date of Policy:
August 18, 2022

Policy Narrative

Students who believe that they are a survivor of a Sexual Violence Offense, should follow the procedures outlined below:

Specific Procedural Steps Survivors Should Take if Sexually Assaulted

A student who is sexually assaulted has the right to make a report to Campus Safety, local law enforcement, and/or state police, or choose not to report. They also have the right to report the incident to Daemen University and in so doing, to be afforded immediate assistance by an appropriate official trained in interviewing victims of sexual assault. Assistance will include any interim measures that may be indicated for the student’s protection, as well as protection by the institution from retaliation for reporting said incident. Victims of sexual assault should go to a safe place, contact Campus Safety at 716-839-SAFE (7233), an RA, or Crisis Services of Buffalo (716-834-3131). These first responders will provide immediate assistance, including helping the student receive any medical attention that may be needed.

Obtaining Medical Attention

For their safety and well-being, victims of sexual assault are encouraged to seek immediate medical attention. Within 96 hours of an assault, a student can get a Sexual Assault Forensic Examination (or “SAFE,” commonly referred to as a rape kit) at a hospital. Daemen encourages students to receive immediate medical attention at a facility that uses SAFE, or Sexual Assault Forensic Examiners. Completing a SAFE will not require a student to file a police report, but it will help to preserve evidence in case they decide at a later date to file a police report. Local hospitals with and without SAFE include the following:

Program/EntitySAFEFacility?LocationContactInformation
Millard Fillmore Suburban HospitalYes1540 Maple RoadWilliamsville, NY 14221716-568-3600
Buffalo General HospitalYes100 High StreetBuffalo, NY 14203716-748-2100
Sisters of CharityHospitalYes2157 Main StreetBuffalo, NY 14214716-862-1000

While there should be no charge from these hospitals for a rape kit, there may be charges for medical or counseling services off campus and, in some cases, insurance may be billed for services. You are encouraged to let hospital personnel know if you do not want your insurance policyholder to be notified about your access to these services.

Available Resources

Students who are survivors of assault or harassment, including incidents that are sexual in nature, have the availability of several resources both on and off-campus, including 24/7 access to a Daemen Administrator On-Call (AOC) who is trained to specifically address these matters. Information will be provided as needed on resources for mental health counseling, medical services (including information on sexually transmitted infections and forensic examinations), legal services and any other pertinent campus or community resources. Student Affairs can work with survivors to implement persona non grata or no contact orders, manage residence hall and/or class conflicts, and similar measures as needed.

The University has partnered with Reach Out Editions to provide an app available for iPhone and Android users. Reach Out allows users to anonymously explore University policies, University and local support services, local medical services, reporting options and other important information that a survivor, respondent, or family member may need. 

Additionally, an  Advocate from Crisis Services of Buffalo coordinates regular campus training and education, including bystander intervention for student leaders, as well as providing support in the event a student is sexually assaulted. Students can also contact any of the offices or agencies below for additional support and assistance.

Support Agencies and University Offices:           Phone

Campus Safety           716-839-SAFE (7233)

Crisis Services – Victims Advocate Program           716-834-3131

Crime Victims Board           716-847-7992

Campus Student Counseling Services           716-839-7380

Health & Insurance Services           716-839-7380

Residence Life Staff           716-839-8200

Director of Community Standards & Student Advocacy           716-839-8200

Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs & Dean of Students    716-839-8519

Title IX Coordinator           716-839-8249
Senior Vice President for Strategic Initiatives           716-839-8519

Enforcement Agencies: Phone

Amherst Police/Buffalo Police 911

Erie County Sheriff’s Department Family Offense Unit 716-858-6102

Erie County District Attorney/Special Victims Bureau 716-858-2525

New York State Domestic and Sexual Violence Hotline
(anonymous and confidential) 1-800-942-6906

New York State Police 24-Hour Hotline 

(sexual assault victims unit) 844-845-7269

Students who have sought and received outside protection from local authorities, such as a restraining order, should share that information with the University. The appropriate official, typically the Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs & Dean of Students (hereinafter “DOS”) (or designee) will assist the student in implementing the order appropriately.

Counseling Services

Professional counselors are retained by the University to assist students who are facing concerns of an academic, adjustment to university, personal, or social nature. They help students work through their concerns to develop appropriate alternatives, actions, or solutions. This service is confidential within the limits of Informed Consent and will be discussed in the first counseling session. The first fifteen sessions are free to Daemen students and in circumstances where more are needed and as approved by the Clinical Director of Counseling and/or Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs & Dean of Students. Referrals to a number of community service agencies are also available. Students can find further information by contacting the CHIP Center at 716-839-7380.

The New York State Office of Victim Services may also be able to assist in compensating victims/survivors for health care and counseling services, including emergency funds. More information can be found here: https://ovs.ny.gov/sites/default/files/brochure/crime-victims-rights-ny-crime-victims.pdf or by calling 1-800-247-8035. 

Options for crime victims are explained here: https://ovs.ny.gov/help-crime-victims.

Report the Incident

Daemen University encourages, but does not require, victims, survivors, complainants, claimants, and witnesses with victim status of Sexual Offenses (reporting individuals) to report the incident to one or more of the following resources:

How to Report Criminal Offenses

In an emergency, students should dial 911. After the emergency is reported, Campus Safety should be called so they can support emergency responders.Community members can contact the Office of Campus Safety at 716-839-SAFE (7233), 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. All members of the campus community are encouraged to report to Campus Safety any suspicious activity or person(s) seen in parking lots or loitering around vehicles, around or in buildings, or around residence halls. In addition, a crime may be reported to the following areas:

Support Agencies and University Offices           Phone

Campus Safety           716-839-SAFE (7233)

Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs & Dean of Students   716-839-8519

Director of Community Standards & Student Advocacy                 716-839-8200

Director of Housing & Residence Life           716-839-8200

First, individuals may (but are not required to) report a Sexual Offense to local law enforcement (such as the Amherst Police Department), and/or the New York State Police for the sole purpose of documentation. Students may also (but are not required to) report the incident to local law enforcement and/or State Police so that they may investigate the matter and identify an offender. Students may contact local and state law enforcement as follows:

  • Amherst Police Department

Address: 500 John James Audubon Parkway, Amherst, NY 14228

Emergencies: 911

Non-Emergencies: 716-689-1311

Website: http://www.amherst.ny.us/content/departments.php?dept_id=dept_16 

  • New York State Police, Troop A

General Address: 3331 Trooper Paul Kurdys Way, Buffalo, NY 14225

General Phone: 716-935-6570

Zone 2 – Grand Island Address: 2255 Baseline Rd, Grand Island, NY 14072

Zone 2 – Grand Island Phone: 716-773-9651

Students who choose to contact law enforcement may have the further option to (but are not required to) pursue the case through the criminal justice system, where they will be assisted by the District Attorney’s office, the local or state Police Department and the support and advocacy services of their choice.

Second, students may (but are not required to) report the Sexual Offense to Daemen University Campus Safety. Once reported to the University, it may trigger the conduct review process at Daemen which may result in the removal in interim measures being applied or formal sanctions as outlined by the procedures outlined in the General Conduct Review Procedures section of this Handbook. It also assists Daemen in complying with Federal requirements for reporting offenses occurring on campus. Students may (but are not required to) report Sexual Offenses anonymously to Daemen University Campus Safety, preserving their privacy and only reporting the particulars of the incident. When an incident is reported to the University, either through a University official or a student, the University will review the incident to determine if a potential violation of the Student Code of Conduct occurred. If there is insufficient information from that report, the DOS (or designee) may request that an investigation occur in order to determine whether there is enough information to warrant charges and a review by a conduct review body. While an investigation occurs, by an official appointed by the DOS (or designee), interim measures may be implemented, as outlined further in this section.

Third, students may also (but are not required to) report the Sexual Offense to the Title IX Coordinator. When a student first discloses an incident to the appropriate staff member, they will be presented with (1) a copy of this policy, (2) a written explanation of their rights and options, whether the incident occurred on or off-campus, and (3) the following information: “You have the right to make a report to campus safety, local law enforcement, and/or state police or choose not to report; to report the incident to your institution; to be protected by the institution from retaliation for reporting an incident; and to receive assistance and resources from your institution.”

Students will have the right to emergency access to the Title IX Coordinator or another appropriate official who has been designated by the Title IX Coordinator to provide emergency assistance (the “Designee”). The Designee may be an official of Daemen University or an official of an off-campus resource. The Title IX Coordinator or Designee will be available upon the first instance of disclosure by a complainant to provide immediate information and assistance regarding (1) options to proceed, including other reporting options; (2) where applicable, the importance of preserving evidence and obtaining a sexual assault forensic examination as soon as possible; and (3) the criminal justice process, including that it utilizes different standards of proof and evidence and that any questions about whether a specific incident violated the penal law should be addressed to law enforcement or to the district attorney. The Title IX Coordinator or Designee will also explain whether they are authorized to offer you confidentiality or privacy, and will inform you about other reporting options.

The Title IX Coordinator will generally be available for emergency access on weekdays between the hours of 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM, at the following: Tiffany Hamilton., Title IX Coordinator, thamilto@daemen.edu, or titleixcoordinator@daemen.edu (716) 839-8249.


When the Title IX Coordinator is not available, emergency access to a Designee will be available at Campus Safety, 716-839-SAFE (7233).

Daemen University will make every effort to ensure that students are asked to describe the incident to as few representatives of the University as possible, and are not required to unnecessarily repeat a description of the incident.

In addition, students may confidentially disclose the Sexual Offense and obtain services from state or local government. Students can also make an anonymous report to a confidential hotline provided by New York state agencies and not-for-profit entities. These hotlines include:

  • New York State Domestic and Sexual Violence Hotline: 1-800-942-6906.
  • The National Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-799-7233.
  • The National Sexual Assault Hotline: 1-800-656-4673.
  • Safe Horizon Hotlines: 800-621-4673 (domestic violence victims), 866-689-4357 (victims of other crimes), 1-212-227-3000 (rape & sexual assault victims).

Lastly, if the accused is an employee of Daemen University, students can report the Sexual Offense to Daemen University’s Office of Employee Engagement, or request that another employee assist in reporting the incident to the Office of Employee Engagement. Daemen University encourages the victims of Sexual Offenses to report the incidents in any of the manners described above. However, victims are not required to report the offense to, or to seek assistance from Daemen University, law enforcement, or campus authorities. Daemen will not pressure any student or employee to disclose a crime or violation, or to participate in the conduct or criminal justice processes. 

Reporting an incident does not:

  • obligate the victim to prosecute;
  • subject the victim to inappropriate scrutiny or judgment by the person receiving the report; or
  • suggest in any way that the victim is at fault for the crime or violation, or should have acted in a different manner to avoid the crime or violation.

Reporting the incident does:

  • ensure that a victim of a Sexual Offense receives necessary medical testing and treatment;
  • provide the opportunity for collection of evidence critical to a prosecution, which cannot be obtained later;
  • ensure that the victim has knowledge of and access to professional, confidential counseling from a counselor specifically trained in the areas of Sexual Offenses.

Request to File Student Conduct Charges

If the respondent is a student, students may request that Daemen University file student conduct charges against the respondent. Any member of the University community may initiate the conduct review process against any student for alleged violations of the Student Code of Conduct generally within two to three months of the alleged violation(s) by submitting a complaint in written form to the Senior Vice President for Strategic Initiatives or the Dean of Students (DOS), who has direct responsibility for managing the student conduct system, or designee. Residence Life and Campus Safety staff report incidents in writing through their supervisors by completing an incident report addressing a violation. Charges filed by all other members of the community must be prepared in writing and will be directed to the DOS (or designee).

Daemen University retains the right to determine whether to actually file the charges against the accused or respondent. Daemen can initiate charges or choose not to initiate them when evidence does or does not merit doing so, in conformity with state and federal law.

Students should be aware that there are significant differences between Daemen’s disciplinary system and the criminal justice system, because they have different, important goals. In the criminal justice system, prosecutors pursue cases when they believe there is sufficient evidence to prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, that an individual has committed a criminal act. A person who is convicted of a crime will face criminal penalties, such as incarceration, probation, or the imposition of a fine. Daemen’s disciplinary process seeks to determine whether an individual has violated university policy. In this process, a preponderance of the evidence standard of proof is used to determine responsibility. A person who is found to have violated Daemen University’s policy may be suspended, expelled, or otherwise restricted from full participation in the Daemen community. 

Seek an Order of Protection/Order of No Contact

Victims of Sexual Offenses may have a right to obtain a court order to protect themselves from perpetrators. The University will enforce all applicable no contact orders, restraining orders, and similar lawful orders issued by a criminal, civil, or tribunal court, to the extent required by law. An order of protection is issued by the court to limit the behavior of someone who harms or threatens to harm another person. It is used to address various types of safety issues, including, but not limited to situations involving domestic violence. Family courts, criminal courts, and Supreme Courts can all issue orders of protection. An order of protection may direct the offending person not to injure, threaten or harass you, your family, or any other person(s) listed in the order.

A Family Court order of protection is issued as part of a civil proceeding. Its purpose is to stop violence within a family or within an intimate relationship, and to provide protection for those individuals affected. All Family Court proceedings are confidential. To obtain an order of protection in the Family Court, your relationship to the other person must fall into one of the following categories: (1) current or former spouse, (2) someone with whom you have a child in common, (3) a family member to whom you are related by blood or marriage, or (4) someone with whom you have or have had an “intimate relationship.” An intimate relationship does not have to be a sexual relationship. A relationship may be considered intimate depending on factors such as how often you see each other or how long you have known each other. After a petition is filed, the court will decide if it is an intimate relationship.

In order to start a proceeding in Family Court, individuals will need to file a form called a Family Offense petition. Individuals can contact the Family Court in their county for help completing and filing the petition. Contact information for Erie County Family Court:

Erie County Family Court

1 Niagara Square, Buffalo, NY 14202

Phone: 716-845-7400

Fax: 716-845-7546

Students may also wish to speak with an attorney or domestic violence advocate before filing. A criminal court order of protection is issued as a condition of a defendant’s release and/or bail in a criminal case. A criminal court order of protection may only be issued against a person who has been charged with a crime.

Daemen University will provide complainants assistance from Campus Safety, or other appropriate officials in obtaining an order of protection. The following individuals can be contacted for assistance in obtaining or understanding an Order of Protection:

  • Douglas Smith 

Director of Campus Safety

716-839-8237

dsmith@daemen.edu

  • Legal Aid Bureau of Buffalo

290 Main Street, Suite 400

Buffalo, NY 14202

716-853-9555

www.legalaidbuffalo.org

Daemen will provide the respondent and the complainant a copy of any order of protection or equivalent that the University receives. Daemen will also provide the respondent and the complainant an opportunity to meet or speak with a representative of the University, or other appropriate individual, who can explain the order and answer questions about it, including information from the order about the respondent’s responsibility to stay away from the protected person or persons. Daemen University will provide the respondent and the complainant an explanation of the consequences of violating these orders, including but not limited to arrest, additional conduct charges, and interim suspension. The University will also call on and assist local law enforcement in effecting an arrest when an individual violates an order of protection.

Order of No Contact: When a student is accused of a sexual offense, Daemen University will generally issue an “order of no contact” to protect the complainant from the respondent. This “order of no contact” is a Daemen University document that does not have the legal effect of an order of protection, which is obtained through a court.

Under the order of no contact: (1) the respondent’s continued intentional contact with the complainant is a violation of Daemen’s policy which is subject to additional conduct charges; and (2) if the respondent and a complainant observe each other in a public place, it is the responsibility of the respondent to leave the area immediately and without directly contacting the complainant. This may include establishing a schedule of attendance for the respondent to access certain locations at Daemen, such as academic buildings, libraries, athletics or fitness facilities, and dining halls.

Responsibility to stay away falls upon the person or persons subject to the order of no contact (“covered person”), not the protected individual. A covered person may be a respondent or a third party who is the subject of an order of no contact. If the covered person and protected person are in the same place accidentally, it is incumbent upon the covered person to remove themselves in a reasonable time and manner.

Upon request, both the respondent and the complainant are entitled to a prompt review, reasonable under the circumstances, of the need for and terms of the mandatory order of no contact, including potential modification, in which they are allowed to submit evidence in support of their requests. Requests to review a mandatory order of no contact should be submitted to Kerry L. Spicer, Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs & Dean of Students at kspicer@daemen.edu. If a request for review is received from one party, the other party will be notified of the request for review. The Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs & Dean of Students or designee will issue a determination in response to the request, and notify both parties of the determination.

Initiate Legal Proceedings

Students may have the right to initiate legal proceedings. Daemen University serves as a resource to students in initiating these proceedings. However, the University is not required to bring actions on behalf of reporting individuals, provide or pay for attorneys, or provide direct support. Local resources may be able to help you initiate legal proceedings, however. These resources may provide services with or without cost. The resources include the following:

  •   Legal Aid Bureau of Buffalo

  290 Main Street, Suite 400

  Buffalo, NY 14202

  716-853-9555

  www.legalaidbuffalo.org 

  • Erie County Bar Association

438 Main Street, 6th Floor

Buffalo, NY 14202

716-852-8687

www.eriebar.org

Right to Withdraw

Students have the right to withdraw their report and/or to withdraw from involvement in Daemen’s investigation of the complaint at any time. If students choose to withdraw, however, the University may still have obligations to investigate and/or take actions under state or federal law. If Daemen continues an investigation or takes action after a student withdraws, students have the right to participate as much or as little as they wish.

Purpose of Policy

To create and maintain an equitable environment where students have the optimal opportunity to succeed academically, personally, and professionally and where any and all Daemen University Community members feel safe, valued, and respected.

This policy’s virtual location is in the Sexual Violence Polices & Procedures section (Section 6) of the Student Handbook –  https://www.daemen.edu/student-life/student-affairs/student-handbook/section-6-sexual-violence-policies-procedures.

Updated on September 8, 2022

Related Articles