Spartans defensive lineman Auston Robertson has been charged with third-degree criminal sexual conduct, Ingham County prosecutors announced today. Prosecutors didn’t say much else about the charge, but a police detective testified in court today and discussed details of the case. Here’s some of what Det. Rebecca Payne told the court, as summarize by the Lansing State Journal:
- Robertson and the woman, who said she knew Robertson, ran into each other at party in East Lansing and the incident was reported to police the following day, when the woman told officers she had been assaulted.
- The woman said that after leaving the party, where she had been drinking, she, Robertson and another acquaintance went to get some food. Robertson called his girlfriend to pick the three of them up and then Robertson’s girlfriend drove them to the woman’s apartment.
- When the car arrived at the woman’s residence, Robertson said he was “going to walk the victim to her apartment and make sure she gets there safely.”
- Once inside the apartment, Robertson assaulted the woman and “refused to stop and continue to forcefully” have sex with the woman.
- Robertson “abruptly stopped and advised the victim that she can’t tell anybody about this incident.”
Robertson has been dismissed from the football team. The charges came a month after a misdemeanor battery case against Robertson from when he was in high school in 2016 was dismissed. MLive.com reported that court documents showed another student told police that Robertson “grabbed her on the vagina” twice while they were in a school office. The case was dismissed last month, per online court records from Indiana, after Robertson finished his diversionary program.
Robertson’s case is separate from another, ongoing sexual assault investigation involving three suspended Spartans football players. About the same time as those suspensions were announced, Michigan State suspended one of its football staffers.
A spokesman for Ingham County Prosecutor Carol Siemon said the office has that case but it is still under review. There also is a related Title IX investigation and an external examination of the football program by an outside law firm.