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Michigan State Spartans freshman guard Brock Washington was charged with misdemeanor assault in Ingham County, Michigan, ESPN’s Paula Lavigne reported Friday.
Lavigne first reported in February prosecutors were investigating Washington after a female student said he “groped her without her permission” last August. Campus police initially investigated before handing off their findings to Ingham County prosecutors in December.
Washington was formally charged March 8.
According to Lavigne, reporters from ESPN’s Outside the Lines asked for a copy of the police report in February regarding the allegations. The university received an extension before ultimately denying ESPN’s request.
Interim president John Engler said “even naming this statute gives information that the statute specifically was designed to protect” in explaining the university’s decision.
Engler took over as interim president in January after his predecessor, Lou Anna Simon, resigned following criticism of her and the university’s handling of allegations made against Larry Nassar.
Lavigne noted Michigan penal code 750.81, the crime with which Washington is charged, falls under the umbrella of the Holmes Youthful Trainee Act.
The law allows anybody between the ages of 17 and 24 to plead guilty to any crime covered by the statute without the guilty plea becoming public record. Should the accused follow the terms of his or her probation and any conditions laid out by the judge, the case is ultimately dismissed.
Three former Michigan State football players—Donnie Corley, Josh King and Demetric Vance—pleaded guilty to seduction charges Wednesday. The three reached an agreement with prosecutors after they had initially been charged with sexual assault, and the judge in the case allowed them to qualify for Holmes Youthful Trainee status.