Stillwater News Press

Local News

January 2, 2013

Higher education attorney to investigate handling of assaults

STILLWATER, Okla. — The Oklahoma State University A&M Board of Regents has hired higher education attorney James Sears Bryant to assist in its investigation into Oklahoma State University’s internal handling of a recent student sexual misconduct incident, which led to charges being filed against a male student by three other male students for sexual battery.

Bryant, who is from Oklahoma and is a former prosecutor and district judge, led an independent investigation into a high profile sexual assault case for the Board of Regents at the University of Iowa in 2008. He works in the Dallas office of the national law firm, Wilson Elser.

On Dec. 13, OSU President Burns Hargis called for a task force previously established by the Board of Regents to conduct an investigation of OSU’s handling of the sexual misconduct allegations.

In November 2012, five students came forward to OSU officials accusing a student of sexually assaulted them. Student Nathan Cochran, 22, was suspended as a result.

He now faces three charges of sexual battery following a criminal investigation by Stillwater police as several others came forward saying Cochran sexually assaulted them.

Police were notified after the campus newspaper received an anonymous email about the sexual assaults.


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