University Of Oregon Drops Players
Accused Of Rape From Basketball Team
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[May 10, 2014]
By Shelby Sebens
PORTLAND, Oregon (Reuters) - Three
University of Oregon basketball players who were accused of rape have
been dropped from the team despite a decision by prosecutors not to
charge them criminally, the school's president said on Friday.
Damyean Dotson and Dominic Artis, both 19, and Brandon Austin, 18,
were suspended amid a police investigation of accusations that they
sexually assaulted a female student on March 8 at an off-campus
party and other locations in Eugene, Oregon.
Lane County District Attorney Alex Gardner announced this week that
he would not file criminal charges against the players, citing a
lack of evidence.
University President Michael Gottfredson said the conduct of the
three players had prompted the school to dismiss them from the
The university has come under fire for allowing Artis and Dotson to
play in the Pac-12 and NCAA tournaments while police investigated
the allegations. Students protested on campus on Thursday, calling
for answers from the university.
"Sexual violence, assault, and harassment have no place on our
campus or anywhere in our community. None. Ever." Gottfredson said
at a news conference in Eugene on Friday. "The type of behavior in
the police report released this week is utterly unacceptable and
will not be tolerated."
Gardner, in announcing that he would not file charges in the case,
said all three players told police they had consensual sex with the
woman, who was not identified.
According to a report issued by his office, the players' stories and
the victim's version of the sexual encounters and the order of
events are similar, though the victim did not agree that she had
consensual sex with them.
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"A no-file decision is not a statement about who we believe or don't
believe. It is simply an analysis of the available evidence and its
sufficiency to meet the state's burden of proof," Gardner said in a
"From time to time, additional evidence becomes available after an
initial no-file decision. When that happens, the evidence is
reviewed and, if sufficient, a case may be revived and prosecuted,"
University officials say they began investigating when learning of
the incident in March but Eugene police asked them to hold off on
doing anything that might hinder the criminal investigation.
(Reporting by Dan Whitcomb; Editing by Mohammad Zargham)
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