Michigan State's Robertson charged with sexual misconduct, dismissed from team
Auston Robertson's charge stems from an alleged incident on April 9
Update: Michigan State coach Mark Dantonio released a statement on Friday announcing that Auston Robertson has been dismissed from the team.
"The criminal sexual conduct charges announced today against Auston Robertson are of the most serious nature. Sexual assault has no place in our community. While there is an ongoing criminal process, we're extremely disappointed that Auston put himself in this position. He is no longer a member of our football program."
The alleged incident that led to the charges occurred April 9. If convicted, Robertson could face up to 15 years in prison. A university spokesman told the Detroit Free Press that Robertson, a sophomore who played in seven games last season, remains a student.
The alleged incident is separate from the ongoing sexual assault investigation involvingand an assistant coach, , the team's director of college advancement and performance. That alleged incident happened Jan. 16 and the suspensions were handed out in February.
On April 13, Michigan State coach Mark Dantonio issued a statement noting a fourth player, now confirmed by the Free Press to be Robertson, was suspended amid a sexual assault investigation.
"We will continue to educate and enforce high standards for the program," Dantonio said, via MLive.com. "I expect all of our players to conduct themselves in a manner that reflects the values and principles of Michigan State University. This investigation is an ongoing process. It is not appropriate at this time for me to comment further on this matter."
On April 12, Dantonio was asked if any players who participated in the April 1 spring game were suspended or no longer with the team. The coach told reporters "Well, we red-lock people from time to time. We use the term red-lock for various things. So yes, there has been. That's a constant. There is constant people in and out of different situations. I think that is normal."
This is not the first off-field issue for Robertson. In January 2016, he was arrested for misdemeanor battery for allegedly touching a female classmate inappropriately while at Wayne High School in October 2015. After entering into a diversionary program, the charges were cleared last month. Robertson did not sign with Michigan State until after he entered the diversionary program.
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