Police report details ‘convoluted’ allegations of sexual assault involving athletes at USU Eastern

Posted at 9:55 PM, Oct 02, 2015

PRICE, Utah -- A 64-page police report released Friday reveals new details about the alleged sexual assault that led to the suspension of the USU Eastern Men’s Basketball team last month.

The report names three men, including two basketball players, who are suspected of sexual assault. However, all three men provide different accounts of what happened the night of September 3.

The one fact they all agree on is that alcohol was being consumed at this party in the Sessions Residence Hall, which is not allowed on this zero-tolerance campus, according to the Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs Greg Dart.

“This report details a very convoluted and hard to follow story," Dart said. "The way this came about is that we had a victim that had absolutely no knowledge of what happened and that is still the case at this point."

One man originally told police he was hiding in a closet and saw the two basketball players assault the victim. Then he changed his story and said he kissed the victim and touched her after her interactions with the other two men.

The basketball players claim their encounters with her were consensual.

A school counselor who was contacted about the alleged attack encouraged the victim to report it and came with her to the hospital. But that counselor also gave the alleged victim’s name and the suspects’ names to the basketball coaches, which, according to the report, caused a safety risk to all parties involved.

“Within the report there is an allegation of obstruction of justice by one of our employees. That employee is currently on paid administrative leave,” Dart said.

While the Carbon County District Attorney decides whether to file any criminal charges, the school is conducting its own Title IX investigation.

“The sexual assault would be the first thing that would be handled," Dart said. "Once that is taken care of then, yes, it’s very likely that several people will be cited for alcohol use on campus."

Right now, three student athletes, including the two alleged suspects on the basketball team and a woman on the women’s basketball team, are suspended from playing, pending the outcome of the Title IX investigation.

A separate obstruction of justice probe has been launched by the Carbon County Sheriff’s Office to determine whether the school counselor will face charges.