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Rape charges dropped against three UMBC baseball players

Updated 9/17/2018 4:44 PM : Updates were made to clarify athletic department policies on sexual assault, and clarify the baseball roster status of the alleged. The word alleged was also added to better communicate the roles of Baltimore County officials in stifling the victim’s attempts to press charges. 

Updated 9/10/2021 10:30 AM: Corrections were made to remove unverified information. The names of the accused were removed to align The Retriever’s reporting with that of other publications. 

UMBC’s campus was engulfed in shock and disgust on Friday afternoon after a report from the Baltimore Brew claimed that police chief Paul Dillon mishandeled rape allegations at the university. A lawsuit by two victims alleges that two separate sexual assaults were covered up by UMBC and Baltimore County officials. The suit also claims that intimidation techniques were used in an effort to silence the victims of the assaults, alleging that State’s Attorney Scott Schellenberger sent police to one of the victim’s homes and threatened to arrest them if they continued to try and press charges.

All charges against all three players were dismissed.

Three UMBC baseball players were accused of drugging, and later raping two Towson University students in the Fall of 2017. According to the article on the Baltimore Brew, “The pair [of Towson University students] left a Towson bar with the three men who, at a nearby apartment, encouraged the women to drink from bottles of vodka and wine while themselves were ‘pretending to drink,’ according to the complaint. After the women passed out, the men sexually assaulted them, the lawsuit says.”

According to the lawsuit, the police did little to no investigation on the matter. The case was closed very quickly, and the players were never arrested. Baltimore County officials allegedly continued to try and stifle the victim’s attempts at seeking justice. Charges were dropped, and the police allegedly threatened to arrest the victim if they continued to pursue justice.

The players were charged with first-degree rape and related charges, according to the Baltimore Sun. However, charges were all dropped within 24-hours.

As of now, none of the three players are listed on the UMBC baseball roster.

During a meeting with the university officials, it was clarified that there is no separate policy for student-athletes regarding sexual assault. Though, it was said that student athletes do receive handbooks that reference the university’s policy on sexual assault. When asked why there is no separate policy. Vice President of Student Affairs Dr. Nancy Young said that “[we] can not hold athletes to different standards.” The NCAA has no blanket policy for the treatment of sexual misconduct allegations, but mandates that athletic departments be compliant with each respective school’s policy.