A Queens man falsely accused of on-campus sexual assault is suing SUNY-Purchase for mishandling the incident and ruining his reputation.
The encounter unfolded in April 2017 at the State University of New York at Purchase, when the male student, identified in court papers only as John Doe, and the unnamed female classmate ended up in bed together after sharing wine with several others, according to court papers.
The woman later reported the incident to school police, and administrators eventually found John Doe had failed to get her “affirmative” consent, even though she’d asked John Doe to get a condom and helped remove her own clothes, according to his legal filing.
In March, a state appeals court overturned SUNY Purchase’s decision, finding it wasn’t backed by “substantial evidence.”
Initially suspended and banned from on-campus housing, John Doe returned to classes in September 2018 while he appealed the college’s punishments, only to be shunned by fellow students, according to his Manhattan Federal Court lawsuit.
Purchase did nothing to stop the harassment, claims John Doe, who says one classmate posted his picture online with the label “rapist.”
“My client had his life turned upside down. His education and his career dreams dashed by false accusations and the mishandling of the investigation by SUNY Purchase,” said John Doe’s lawyer, Imran Ansari.
He’s suing the Westchester school for unspecified damages. A spokeswoman for Purchase declined to comment on the litigation but noted, “harassment of any kind is never tolerated on our campus.”