Jingyi Cui

Though acquitted of sexual assault charges in criminal court last March, Saifullah Khan was expelled from Yale Wednesday after the University-Wide Committee on Sexual Misconduct found Khan responsible for sexually assaulting a Yale undergraduate in October 2015, according to a blog post by his attorney Norm Pattis.

Yale College Dean Marvin Chun and University spokesman Tom Conroy declined to comment on student disciplinary matters.

Khan was first suspended by Yale in November 2015 for allegedly sexually assaulting a female undergraduate student after the 2015 Yale Symphony Orchestra Halloween show. Days later, Khan was arrested by Yale police, and the UWC initiated a formal proceeding into the complaint. However, the UWC delayed a formal hearing as Khan awaited a verdict for two and a half years in criminal court.

In March 2018, Khan was acquitted on four counts of sexual assault, drawing national attention as college rape cases are rarely tried in court. In May, the UWC resumed its hearing process and Khan was permitted to re-enroll at Yale in the fall as the UWC continued its proceedings. Like most colleges and universities, Yale uses a lower standard of proof — a “preponderance of the evidence” — compared to criminal courts, which use a “beyond a reasonable doubt” standard. Under Yale’s standard, there must be a greater than 50 percent likelihood that the accused committed the crime in order to be found guilty.

But on Oct. 7 — three days after the News published new accusations of sexual assault against Khan — Chun suspended Khan for the second time.  On Oct. 10, Khan filed a suit against Yale contesting the emergency suspension and demanding that he be reinstated. The UWC held a hearing on the 2015 complaint on Nov. 6 during Khan’s suspension.

According to a notice from the Connecticut Judicial Branch obtained by the News, Khan withdrew his lawsuit against Yale on Jan. 3. The expulsion has made Khan’s hearing “moot,” Pattis wrote in his blog post.

Still, Khan will request an appeal to the UWC, according to Pattis’ blog post, but will “likely lose the appeal” as he cannot challenge the UWC’s finding. According to UWC policy, the only grounds for appeal are procedural errors or the discovery of relevant facts that were unavailable prior to the hearing. Khan will “turn to the federal courts for relief” if Yale does not grant an appeal, according to Pattis’ post.

“Mr. Khan is now expelled and will have to fight his way back into Yale by way of the courts in lengthier proceedings,” Pattis said in his blog post. “… He still believes in justice, and, for reasons that escape me, still wants to finish his degree at Yale.”

In his post, Pattis sharply criticized Yale’s “fatally flawed” fact-finding process and argued that Khan was deprived of his due process rights during the UWC hearing. While Khan cross-examined his accuser at his criminal trial, his accuser was not required to attend the UWC hearing and Skyped in instead.

Last summer, an online petition calling on Yale not to readmit Khan garnered over 77,000 signatures.

Alice Park | alice.park@yale.edu.

Jever Mariwala | jever.mariwala@yale.edu.

  • concerned

    Norm Pattis represents his client well. It is Yale who is responsible for this spectacle. The “UWC” and these decisions were called for 40 years ago, back when complaints about Harold Bloom included that he had given the clap to graduate students (I had to read about this because I was not a member of the English department.) For that matter, I also recall reading about a dorm party that included drunken students and a giant phallus. Shame on you now, UWC, for reflexing due process protections to benefit the current predators on campus. Why does it take 70,000 signatures to sanction someone for sexual misconduct on campus?

    • MGTOWMonster

      You are completely misguided, wrong, and likely complicit in the due process denial for men at Yale.
      Fortunately, more men are winning lawsuits against trash institutions like Yale and those who support their “victim” narrative at the expense of the wrongfully accused!


        your chosen username explains everything about you and your thinly veiled vendetta

  • Dittersdorf451

    Mr. Pattis also wrote, “Mr. Khan was deprived of the right to counsel at Yale’s hearing. He could bring an adviser, but the adviser could not speak. I winced as I listed to panel members ask compound questions, assume facts not in evidence, and engage in the sort of fact-finding blunders lawyers and judges are trained to avoid.” Yale’s procedure is indefensible. The focus on the standard of evidence (BARD vs. preponderance), as opposed to the lack of meaningful due process, is feckless. I can understand why Mr. Khan wants to fight for the right to go back to Yale, but I cannot understand why he would actually want to go back.

  • James Galullo

    Since nobody knows exactly what happened in that room except the claimant and defendant. How is it possible for Yale to ignore the facts in it own possession during the UWC hearing vs hearsay testimony? Yale has the claimants statement to Yale Health that the sex was “consensual”. Yale has the video showing the claimant walking arm-in-arm with the defendant smiling and not being dragged. Yale has the card-swipe transmittal of both the claimant and the defendant showing claimant allowing voluntary access to her room on (2) sperate occasions after returning from the concert. The claimant texted to her friends that she was “fine” on her phone while in her room with the defendant. Then less than 48 hours of the alleged “rape” the claimant has anal sex with a stranger (which is perfectly ok if that is your desire) so clearly she could not have been that tramatized, so why is she credible?

    Please advise.

  • Killer Marmot

    “Last summer, an online petition calling on Yale not to readmit Khan garnered over 77,000 signatures.”

    Interesting style of justice these people have. Verdict through popular acclaim, even though few have likely examined the evidence. How that differs from vigilantism I’ll leave for others to explain.

  • MGTOWMonster

    You due process deniers deserve to be punished very harshly.

  • roccolore

    Democrats are the party of guilty even after proven innocent.

  • disqus_OJ3VYYrP5G

    Justice at last. Thank you, Yale.