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Osteen v. Henley

United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
13 F.3d 221 (1993)


Northern Illinois University (defendant) expelled Thomas Osteen (plaintiff) after he physically harmed two other students in a fight. Prior to his dismissal, the university initiated disciplinary proceedings by mailing Osteen a notice of charges and a copy of the school’s judicial code. Osteen then met with the university’s judicial officer, signed a form in which he pleaded guilty to the charges, and requested a hearing on the proposed sanction of a two-year expulsion. An appeals board conducted the hearing, which was attended by the judicial officer, Osteen, and Osteen’s student advocate. Upon considering their statements, character references, and other documents, the appeals board concluded that a two-year expulsion was appropriate. Osteen appealed to the university’s associate vice-president for student affairs, but he upheld the expulsion. Osteen sued the school, arguing that his expulsion constituted a deprivation of property without due process of law, in violation of the Fourteenth Amendment. The district court dismissed. Osteen appealed.

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