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Oklahoma State University board hires outside attorney to assist with handling of sexual assault reports

Dallas-based attorney James Sears Bryant will assist a regents investigation into Oklahoma State University's response to reports of sexual assaults involving Nathan Cochran, a former OSU student who faces sexual battery charges. Bryant specializes in higher education and sports law.
by Silas Allen Published: January 2, 2013

The board that oversees Oklahoma State University has hired an outside attorney to assist with a review of the school's response to reports of sexual assaults, education leaders announced Wednesday.

Dallas-based attorney James Sears Bryant will assist the Board of Regents for Oklahoma State University and the A&M Colleges as it investigates the university's response to reports of sexual assaults. Nathan Cochran, a former OSU student, faces sexual battery charges.

Bryant works in the Dallas office of national law firm Wilson Esler, where he specializes in higher education and sports law.

NewsOK Search: Read complete coverage on the sexual assaults

In 2008, he led an independent investigation into a sexual misconduct case at the University of Iowa. In that case, a female student reported being sexually assaulted by two University of Iowa football players. The woman was later subject to intimidation and retaliation by other student athletes.

In that investigation, Bryant reported the university failed to adequately protect the woman from retaliation.

In a statement, Board of Regents Chairman Andy Lester, an Edmond attorney, said he has known Bryant for 30 years and has confidence in his work.

“I am familiar with his work both from having practiced law with him and from following the investigation he led in a sexual misconduct matter at the University of Iowa,” Lester said. “He has an excellent reputation for his diligence, thoroughness and integrity.”

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by Silas Allen
General Assignment/Breaking News Reporter
Silas Allen is a news reporter for The Oklahoman. He is a Missouri native and a 2008 graduate of the University of Missouri.
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