Authorities say a former Michigan State University football player, Auston Robertson, was arrested and charged with third-degree criminal sexual conduct following his suspension on April 9, CBS Detroit reports.
On April 8, the 19-year-old MSU defensive lineman ran into a female friend at a party in East Lansing. The pair, along with another friend, went to a local pizza place before Robertson’s girlfriend picked up the trio to take them home.
When they arrived at the suspected victim’s apartment complex at around 11 p.m., Meridian Township Police detective Rebecca Payne stated that Robertson told the alleged victim that he would walk her to her apartment to ensure that she made it inside safely.
The alleged victim told officers with the Meridian Township Police Department that she had been drinking at the party.
The MSU football player then entered the apartment and forcibly penetrated the woman against her will, according to Payne, who added that Robertson asked the woman not to say anything to anyone about the alleged rape.
Afterward, it was reported that the MSU football player left the state for four days, returning to his hometown in Fort Wayne, Indiana.
The following day, the woman filed a complaint with the Meridian Township Police Department.
He was charged with sexual assault then dismissed from MSU's football program on Friday. https://t.co/N3nxsUm8WJ
— 99.1 WFMK (@991WFMK) April 23, 2017
Several reports indicated that the woman told her boyfriend and a friend who were both able to relay the same story to police officials.
A warrant was issued for the MSU football player’s arrested and on Sunday, it was announced on the Meridian Township Police Department Facebook page that Robertson was in custody.
Initially, police officials asked for the public’s help in locating the MSU football player after he left the state, believing that he was a flight risk.
In 2016, Robertson was also arrested for touching a female juvenile’s vagina while attending Wayne High School in Fort Wayne. The assault charged was dismissed without conviction in March of last year after the MSU football player completed a “pre-trial diversion program and stayed out of trouble for a year.”
After the former MSU football player’s arrest, the Michigan State head football coach Mark Dantonio released the following statement.
“Due to the charges he was facing during his recruitment, we took precaution in allowing Auston to be a part of our football program, including a thorough vetting, which we acknowledged publicly at his signing. This was a multiple-step process that continued through his final admission in the summer.”
“Following his arrival on campus, he underwent an extensive educational process with specific prerequisites put in place for his participation as a student-athlete. This included daily supervised sessions within the football program and regular meetings with university staff addressing appropriate behavior and developmental growth.”
BREAKING: MSU sophomore defensive lineman Auston Robertson charged with 3rd-degree criminal sexual conduct.https://t.co/T1QNgbNuop
— Freep Sports (@freepsports) April 21, 2017
Dantonio went on to say that “he (MSU football player) also successfully completed his one-year diversionary program as directed by the court, which included a 22-week course focused on behavior changes that began in Indiana and was transferred to the state of Michigan (Prevention and Training Services). Despite these measures, Auston broke our trust and expectations by putting himself in a compromising situation.”
“Our players are representatives not only of themselves and their families but also Michigan State University, this football program and all of those who support us. We will continue to emphasize and enforce the high standards of integrity, respect, and accountability that I have for everyone in this program. We expect all of our players to conduct themselves in a manner that reflects the values and principles of this university.”
— Charles E Ramirez_DN (@CharlesERamirez) April 23, 2017
If the MSU football player is found guilty of raping a woman in her apartment home, Robertson could face up to 15 years in prison.
[Featured Image by Leon Halip/Getty Images]