Tuesday, May 2, 2017
On April 28th, the UNT Police Department obtained arrest warrants for three university students and one individual unassociated with the university. Warrants for engaging in organized criminal activity—promotion of prostitution and drug possession were obtained for two students while a warrant for drug possession was obtained for the third student. The UNT Police Department is leading the criminal investigation.
None of the students involved are currently allowed on campus.
On March 30th, the university received a report of an alleged sexual assault with a reference to alleged prostitution, and the UNTPD immediately began an aggressive investigation. President Neal Smatresk, a handful of key university officials and the UNT System Office of General Counsel were aware of the ongoing investigation. On April 26th, the president was briefed by the UNT Chief of Police, after which appropriate action was taken.
Two of the students are former members of the men’s basketball program and the other had served as a student manager for the program. Based on the information the university has received from law enforcement thus far, this appears to be an isolated incident involving individuals who are no longer associated with our men’s basketball program.
President Smatresk and Vice President and Director of Athletics Wren Baker have retained the services of Bond Schoeneck & King, a national law firm, to conduct an independent review and ensure that there are no cultural or climate issues within the program. The firm will begin its review today and will work quickly but comprehensively.
The university will report on the results of the review – and any recommendations – upon its completion. The review will not be focused on any of the criminal aspects of this case, as that is a police matter. Should the outside review or the law enforcement investigation result in new information or concerns, they will be addressed.
University President Neal Smatresk:
“The alleged actions of these students are contrary to the values of our university and our Student Code of Conduct. The university is cooperating fully with investigators and working diligently to obtain all facts pertaining to this issue. We will be as transparent as possible with the university community. The independent review by a respected national firm will help to ensure that this matter is not indicative of a cultural issue within the program. It’s the responsibility of this university to promote a respectful and supportive environment for our community, and we will take all appropriate actions to ensure the safety of our community members.”