Student & Athlete Defense

Allegations of campus sexual misconduct can have lasting and devastating consequences for a student’s or professor’s academic and professional future.

KJK’s Student & Athlete Defense Practice Group defends and advises students and professors facing Title IX and other campus misconduct allegations, in addition to criminal prosecution. Led by Partners Susan Stone and Kristina Supler, our team serves clients across the country involved in campus misconduct matters to ensure that they receive due process. Our team also advocates for students with learning disabilities to ensure they receive equal access to education.

KJK Student & Athlete Defense Partners Susan Stone and Kristina Supler were interviewed by CNN as part of a nationwide discussion sparked by a controversial case: A former Baylor University student charged with sexually assaulting a woman at a frat party won’t spend a day in jail after taking a plea deal. Read what they have to say about why this case is far from atypical.

“When there is a plea, it’s because there are problems with the evidence and the prosecutors can’t prosecute their case beyond a reasonable doubt.” – Kristina Supler

Title IX and Campus Misconduct

We work closely with students and professors facing Title IX allegations involving sexual assault, sexual harassment and intimate partner violence, including cases where a coordinated criminal defense is also needed. Our goal is to protect the academic transcript, career and reputation of our clients. Our team also represents students who have already been found responsible and who are pursuing Title IX appeals, fighting for their due process rights. We work closely with other KJK attorneys in cases that intersect with criminal matters, litigation and employment law.

Coordinated Criminal Defense

Our attorneys defend students and professionals charged with a variety of criminal offenses including sexual assault, domestic violence, drug offenses and other type of crimes that occur on college campuses. We understand the skill and strategy required to navigate campus misconduct proceedings that may trigger criminal prosecution. We have years of experience defending individuals in state and federal courts around the country and know how to uncover meaningful evidence required to build an effective defense in a court of law. When criminal charges cannot be resolved, we are experienced trial attorneys.

Research & Scientific Misconduct

Allegations of research misconduct and scientific fraud can mean serious, potentially disastrous consequences for the accused, including damage to one’s reputation, destruction of one’s career and loss of federal research grants. KJK’s Research & Scientific Misconduct Practice Group protects graduate students, professors and scientists facing allegations of research misconduct and scientific fraud. Led by Partners Susan Stone and Kristina Supler, our practice understands the seriousness of being accused of fabrication, falsification or plagiarism related to research funded by the Department of Health and Human Services. When individuals are accused of research misconduct in the academic setting, we navigate both the academic proceeding and the investigation conducted by the Office of Research Integrity. ORI is tasked with investigating and adjudicating research fraud involving government funds. Thus, we defend our clients in two separate processes. Our experience with academic and administrative proceedings, the criminal justice system and employment issues enables us to provide a comprehensive defense for those accused of research misconduct. Our team represents scientists through a multi-step process. Once a report of misconduct is made to an academic institution, we work to ensure that the process is handled impartially through the inquiry and investigative phases. Institutional compliance with policies is essential for fairness in the process. Collaborating with leading subject-matter experts to help unravel the substantive allegations, we are armed and ready to build a defense.

Reputation Management

Our firm has defended students and professionals accused of sexual harassment, various forms of sexual misconduct, rape and scientific and/or research misconduct. We have also represented executives and other employees who have been accused of workplace wrongdoing and misconduct, including sexual harassment, employment discrimination, workplace violence and financial improprieties. In the past, we have served as student advisors in Title IX hearings, defense attorneys for criminal prosecutions and employment lawyers handling severance negotiations when careers are threatened. All of these proceedings that threaten the careers and liberty of our accused clients require diplomacy and precision. Sadly, more and more of our clients have been tried in the court of public opinion through social media. We have watched careers ruined and reputations destroyed by a simple tweet or post. Many times, accusers have even used posts that threaten to file a charge in the criminal justice system as a scare tactic to prevent our clients from pursuing their careers. In these cases, we collaborate with a team of criminal, education and employment lawyers to mount an offensive to preserve the reputation of our clients. We first try to cooperate with the employer to resolve the issues. If that can’t be done, we often send a strongly worded cease and desist letter. Other times, we file defamation actions in state and federal courts. When we file suit, we ask that the court provide both injunctive and monetary relief. In one situation, we even asked that the perpetrator of the defamatory remarks post an apology on the very sites where our client was defamed. Each matter requires the right team of professionals to craft a highly individualized strategy to rebuild and repair the damaged reputation of our clients.

Special Education Law

Our team advocates for students with learning disabilities and differences from the beginning of their education in preschool through the end of their academic career in college or postgraduate studies. We work with students and parents to fight for a child’s right to equal access to education as guaranteed by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). This includes assistance in navigating 504 Plans and Individual Education Programs (IEPs), and defending students with special needs facing disciplinary issues like bullying. When needed, we work closely with other professionals such as therapists, college consultants and private specialists.

Submit a Special Education Services request to be contacted about assistance.

Autism Defense

We have unique experience representing individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) who come into contact with the criminal justice system, ranging from drug offenses, federal prosecutions for internet crimes and sexual offenses. We understand the social communication deficits of this growing population, and how vulnerable they can be to making mistakes on the internet or in navigating sexual interactions. Our practice collaborates with outside medical experts to create a defense specialized for those with autism.

Client Feedback

Allow me to take this time to thank you for all of your hard work, expertise and understanding toward clearing our son’s record and allowing him to resume his life without this undeserved burden. I could sense from our first meeting, your work in this area is not just an avocation, but a passion to affect change in the way these cases are decided. Your professionalism throughout the process was exceptional, especially with regard to your communications with me. I have never worked with an attorney group which made unprovoked calls to update us on the progress of our efforts!” 

“The team that Susan Stone put together for me and my son was strong, passionate, knowledgeable and determined. Together, they helped us build a strong IEP and gain one-on-one tutoring during school, all of which I am confident will help my son reach his full potential and then some! I could not be more thankful for my time with Susan, Kirsten and Vivian.” 

“KJK guided us through a very difficult time in our lives and provided support that helped beyond the original request. The firm and advocate worked as a team to ensure a proper diagnosis, ETR and IEP. They were coordinated, communicative and confident. Their commitment to results and concern for our son was evident throughout the process.”

Students & Faculty Represented:

We routinely travel to colleges and universities nationwide, representing students, athletes and faculty facing Title IX investigations or allegations of campus misconduct.

  • American University
  • Antioch College
  • Ashland University
  • Bowling Green State University
  • California State University – Channel Islands
  • California State University – Fresno
  • Case Western Reserve University
  • Champlain College
  • The Citadel, The Military College of South Carolina
  • Clarkson University
  • Cleveland State University
  • College of Charleston
  • College of Wooster
  • Cornell University
  • Denison University
  • DePauw University
  • Dominican University
  • Drake University
  • Duke University
  • Emory University
  • Harvard University 
  • Hiram College
  • John Carroll University
  • Kent State University
  • Kenyon College
  • Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine
  • LeTourneau University
  • Miami University
  • Montana State University
  • Mount St. Mary’s University
  • Northeast Ohio Medical University
  • Oakland University
  • Oberlin College Ohio
  • Ohio Northern University
  • The Ohio State University
  • Ohio University
  • Ohio Wesleyan University
  • Reed College
  • Ross University School of Veterinary Medicine
  • School of the Art Institute of Chicago
  • State University of New York at Purchase (Purchase College)
  • Stockton University
  • Tulane University
  • University of Akron
  • University of Cincinnati
  • University of Maryland
  • University of Mount Union
  • University of Miami
  • University of Nebraska – Lincoln
  • University of Pittsburgh
  • University of Toledo
  • Ursuline College
  • Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
  • Westminster College
  • Wright State University
  • Youngstown State University