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Oberlin College Tag

Today starting at 10 a.m. is the oral argument in (1) the appeal byOberlin College and Dean of Students Meredith Raimando seeking to overturn the compensatory and punitive damage awards totalling, after reduction under Ohio tort reform law, $25 million, plus over $6 million in attorney's fees, bringing the judgment to over $32 million, and (2) the cross-appeal by Gibson's Bakery and two members of the Gibson family (including the widow of the late David Gibson) seeking to restore the full $33 million punitive damages award, arguing the tort reform reduction was unconstitutional, which would add back about $15 million to the judgment.

You remember John Doe No. 1 v. Oberlin College, not to be confused with John Doe No. 2 v. Oberlin College. John Doe No. 1 is the expelled male student who alleged, among other things, that the Oberlin College sexual assault hearing process was so rigged and biased that 100% of the accused students (all or almost all male) who went to hearing were found responsible.

John Doe No. 2 is an Oberlin College male student who seeks an injunction halting what he asserts is a biased sexual assault hearing system. John Doe No. 2 faces the same system of college adjudication which led a different student, John Doe No. 1, to sue after expulsion, asserting that the college had a 100% conviction rate for accused students (all or almost all male) who went to hearing.

There are multiple appellate fronts in the Gibson's Bakery v. Oberlin College case. First and most important, Oberlin College and Dean Meredith Raimondo have appealed seeking to overturn the massive compensatory and punitive damage verdicts. Numerous entities have come to their assistance by filing amicus (friend of the court) briefs, including certain Cleveland media entities. The Gibsons' response to the appeal is due by August 5.

The appeal brief of Gibson's Bakery opposing the appeal of Oberlin College and Meredith Raimondo is due on August 5, after Gibson's motion for a final extension of time was granted by the appeals court Magistrate. Gibson's previously filed its Cross-Appeal Brief, seeking reinstatement of the full punitive damages verdict. While the regular briefing has been pending, a group of media and other groups asked permission to file so-called Amicus (friend of the Court) briefs in support of the college's appeal.

Oberlin College has filed its Brief appealing the $11 million compensatory and $33 million punitive damage verdicts (later reduced to $25 million under Ohio tort reform caps) won by Gibson's Bakery. The Bakery also has filed its Cross-Appeal Brief seeking reinstatement of the full punitive damages verdict.

In 2015, we were the first to report on a 14-page Demand List issued by ABUSUA, Oberlin College's Black Students Union, including faculty hiring mandates and tenure promotions for black faculty, as well as a demand to “deconstruct imperialism, white supremacy, capitalism, ableism, and a cissexist heteropatriarchy” and to divest from Israel. The Demand List went viral, and is the most-viewed Scribd document we have posted, with over 172,000 reads.

Last Friday, Oberlin College and Dean of Students Meredith Raimondo filed their Appeal Brief, seeking to overturn the trial verdict. The NAACP also filed a ridiculous Amicus Brief supporting the college. According to the docket, at least one more Amicus Brief will be filed for a coalition of 'anti-censorship' groups. Today, Gibson's Bakery filed its Cross-Appeal Brief (pdf.)(full embed at bottom of post). Wait, what is a cross-appeal?

Oberlin College and Dean of Students Meredith Raimondo have filed their Appeal Brief (pdf.) in the Gibson's Bakery case. The NAACP also has filed an Amicus Brief (pdf.) in support of the college. Full copies of both briefs are at the bottom of this post. The Oberlin College Brief is redacted because some information was filed under seal (the information at issue in the various motions to unseal we previously covered). It's not clear whether any Amicus Briefs will be filed supporting the Gibsons, to my knowledge no one is coming to their assistance.
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