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AG: Charges not warranted for former Michigan State basketball player accused of sex assault

  • October 27, 2020

LANSING, Mich. — A second team of prosecutors has concluded that criminal charges are not warranted against a former Michigan State basketball player who was accused of sexual assault early this year.

Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel’s office said it thoroughly reviewed the allegations against Brock Washington and didn’t find grounds to bring charges.

“Following an in-depth review and consideration of the evidence, the Attorney General’s office has decided not to file charges against Brock Washington, who was a Michigan State University student and athlete when he was accused of sexual misconduct,” AG spokesperson Ryan Jarvi said in an email to the Lansing State Journal.

Jarvi said prosecutors conducted a “thorough evaluation of the circumstances, witness testimony and other information” before declining to authorize charges. 

Then-Michigan State guard Brock Washington shoots the ball during practice before the first round of the 2019 NCAA tournament.

Nessel’s office agreed to review the case after the Ingham County Prosecutor’s Office declined to bring charges against Washington. Prosecutor Carol Siemon said her office couldn’t prove the case in court.

Washington was accused of assaulting a woman in January in East Lansing, during his junior year at Michigan State, according to a police report obtained through a public records request.

He was suspended from the team Jan. 24 for undisclosed reasons.

Michigan State’s Office of Institutional Equity determined Washington assaulted a woman and recommended banning him from the university for violating school policies, ESPN reported. At the time, Michigan State did not confirm or deny that report, saying the appeals process was still underway,

Washington’s attorney, Mary Chartier, said the university granted his appeal of the findings and will give him a hearing, probably in December. Michigan State’s own rules say a hearing should be held when the accuser’s credibility is at issue, she said.

Washington strongly denies the allegations, Chartier said.

More:ESPN: MSU moves to ban former basketball player for violating sexual misconduct policy

More:AG’s office asks for sexual assault investigation involving MSU basketball player

“It’s frustrating to me that allegations somebody makes against someone are not really looked at,” she said. “So I’m glad MSU has granted our appeal, and now we get the opportunity to present the case we wanted to all along.”

Michigan State spokeswoman Emily Guerrant said the case remains under “appeal/review” and that no sanctions would happen until the “full process is over.” She acknowledged that the appeal process can include hearings.

Washington is not currently enrolled at Michigan State, Guerrant said.

Washington wants to clear his name but does not intend to go back to Michigan State, Chartier said, adding the ordeal has “soured him to the MSU experience.”

Follow Ken Palmer on Twitter @KBPalm_lsj.

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