PC student says she was raped by 2 basketball players
By: Alexandra Cowley
While there's a lot of excitement over the Providence College NCAA championship game in Texas, there's a cloud hanging over PC after the suspension of two of its basketball players earlier this season.
We've learned Providence police have launched an investigation after a PC student came forward accusing the players of rape.
Months after two freshman PC basketball players were suspended from the team for not upholding their responsibility as student athletes, we're learning why. Rodney Bullock and Brandon Austin were suspended in November, 3 days after a student reported she was sexually assaulted.
In January, Austin transferred to the University of Oregon.
PC senior Pat Beech says, “you knew it was shady because none of us have known anything for like three months, but it kind of explains why one of the freshman would go all the way out to Oregon and get as far away from Rhode Island as he could.”
Now, Providence Police are investigating the incident, after the student filed a report, alleging she was raped on PC's campus on the night of November 2nd.
Major David Lavation says, “if the allegations ring truth, then we will file charges, or we will recommend charges to the attorney generals office.”
Before the student came to police, PC conducted its own investigation. Concluding the full season suspension was proper punishment.
A PC spokesperson tells ABC 6 news they encouraged the student to report the incident and drove her to and from the Providence police station on March 6th, when the claim was filed.
The delay, is a snag in the case when it comes to physical evidence.
“We like to be on top of situations like this so we can talk to witnesses and complainants when everything is fresh,” said Major Lavation.
PC students are disheartened by the claims, but hope it doesn't affect Friday's championship game.
PC Junior Gar vin Gaels says, “It does put a speed bump on the road to victory, hopefully we can get over this.”
Coach Cooley released a statement saying in part:
“Naturally, I was saddened by this situation, but we will not compromise the promise we've made. To build and run the most respected men's basketball program in the nation.”
We tried numerous times to reach Rodney Bullock's attorney William Lynch, but never heard back. Bullock is in Texas with the team and will be eligible to play next season.
As for Brandon Austin, he's on the University of Oregon's roster which says he won't be eligible to play until after Fall 2014.
Police hope to wrap up their investigation within two weeks.
(C) WLNE-TV 2014