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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Sexual assault accusation against Idaho student athlete surfaces

Associated Press

MOSCOW, Idaho – The Moscow Police Department disclosed that a University of Idaho student athlete was accused of sexual assault last year, contradicting a statement by the athletic director that his department has not had any recent issues with sexual assault.

A woman filed a report with the Moscow Police Department alleging that she was sexually assaulted by a University of Idaho student athlete in November, the Moscow-Pullman Daily News reported.

The newspaper did not identify the student because no charges were filed in the case. The student athlete has not been removed from his team.

Capt. Tyson Berrett informed the Office of the Dean of Students and Athletic Director Rob Spear of the report, he said.

The police department investigated the case and forwarded it to the Latah County Prosecutor’s Office, which declined to file charges.

The prosecutor’s office returned the case to police without charges because there wasn’t enough evidence, said Bill Thompson, the county’s prosecuting attorney.

Spear’s lawyer declined to comment on the November allegations, citing an instruction from the university’s General Counsel not to speak about the case.

Spear told the Associated Students of the University of Idaho Senate on April 4 that his department had not recently had issues with sexual assault.

Spear had been placed on paid administrative leave day before addressing the student senators amid allegations that his department had mishandled complaints of sexual assault and harassment against a football player in the spring of 2013.

The university has hired an outside entity to review its handling of previously reported police incident involving a single football player in 2012 and 2013.