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Tuesday, 15 April 2014 10:49

Mizzou Responds To Dowd Bennett Findings

Columbia, MO -- The Chancellor of the University of Missouri has issued a response to the report issued by the law firm Dowd Bennett regarding how the University handled a sexual assault allegation by a former student-athlete who later committed suicide.
 
R. Bowen Loftin says he accepts the findings which conclude that, though there was no intentional mishandling of the allegation by then-Missouri swimmer Sasha Menu Courey, the University did not follow proper Title IX guidelines in reporting the alleged assault to the campus Title IX coordinator.
 
Title IX guidelines were established by the Office of Civil Rights to advise agencies receiving federal funding how to protect against gender discrimination. The Dowd Bennett report also concluded that the University had not done enough to educate the staff on legal responsibilities as it relates to Title IX compliance.
 
Loftin says the safety, security and health of the students are the most important priorities. The Chancellor also expressed his sympathy to the family and friends of Menu Courey saying "Although nothing will bring her back, we can move forward and honor her memory by making sure that MU is accountable and responsible.
 
Loftin says the University is implementing the plan put forth by President Timothy Wolfe who has directed all four campuses to conduct a comprehensive review of all sexual assault and mental health resources available to students, staff and faculty and then to re-educate them about those resources.
 
In addition, each campus was tasked with reviewing all policies, procedures and training as it relates to sexual assault and mental health.  He says that they are also examining the Office of Student Conduct and how cases involving sexual assault are addressed. 
 
Athletic Director Mike Alden has also created a task force to examine how his department handles student incidents and concerns.
Published in Local News
   Suspended Mizzou wide receiver Dorial Green Beckham has been dismissed from the Missouri Tigers' football team.  The university released a statement Friday afternoon saying the decision was made by Head Coach Gary Pinkel in conjunction with Athletics Director Mike Alden.
   In a statement, Coach Pinkel said, "This decision was made with the best interests of all involved in mind."  He went on to say, "Dorial's priority going forward needs to be focusing on getting the help he needs."  He added, "As we have all along, we will continue to do everything we can to assist Dorial and his family.  We care deeply about Dorial and his well-being, but hopefully he can benefit from a fresh start."
   Director Alden also commented, saying in a statement, "We have a high standard of conduct for our student-athletes."  He added that the athletics department is "responsible to the community at large and to the ideals and values of the University of Missouri."  He called Green Beckham's dismissal, "a necessary step" for the team, the department, the school and the community."
   Earlier in the day Green Beckham had released a statement.  His father, John Beckham shared the statement by phone with the St. Louis Post-Dispatch Friday.  Beckham told the paper his son wrote the statement himself.
   It reads:
"First and more importantly, I take responsibility for my conduct and my mistakes.  Don't blame my girlfriend or her friends for anything.  I am not looking for sympathy.  I thank those who have given me concern.  I have been young and dumb.  I want to be better.  During my suspension I'm entering counseling.  With help, I know I can be stronger emotionally and spiritually.  My relationship with God, my family, friends, teammates and coaches are most important in my life, not football.  It may not be possible to fix everything, but it won't be for not trying. - Dorial Green Beckham"
 
   Green Beckham had been the subject of a burglary investigation after allegedly forcing his way into an apartment Sunday morning in a dispute with his girlfriend.  The investigation was closed after the victims declined to press charges saying they feared community backlash.  On Monday, Coach Gary Pinkel had announced Green Beckham's indefinite suspension for an unspecified violation of team rules.
 
Published in Local News

   Missouri wide receiver Dorial Green-Beckham won't face any charges related to a burglary reported at the Brookside Apartments early Sunday morning. That's according to a statement released by Columbia Police Thursday.

   The incident report, released the same day, alleges that Green-Beckham had forced his way into the apartment, injuring a resident by knocking her down some stairs.  Green-Beckham had reportedly been looking for his girlfriend at the time.  

   According to the police report, the two women who had tried to bar his entry have declined to press charges.  The injured woman reportedly told police she was afraid of the community and media backlash if she pressed charges against the star MU player.  

   Tigers coach Gary Pinkel had suspended Green-Beckham indefinitely for an undisclosed violation of team rules.

Published in Local News
   COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) - A former Missouri basketball player is seeking a protection order against Zach Price, who remains suspended from the team after being arrested twice for allegedly assaulting his roommate and a woman.
   The Columbia Daily Tribune reports that Earnest Ross filed the petition in Boone County Circuit Court on April 2.  Price was arrested twice the next day after reportedly first ramming his car into another vehicle and then in a later encounter with Ross and the woman. Police say he hit his male roommate in the face then pushed the woman to the ground.
   The restraining order request identifies Ross as the roommate and his girlfriend as the other victim. Price sat out last season after transferring from Louisville. No charges have been filed in the case.
 
Published in Local News

   Burglary, not drugs.  That's what Missouri wide receiver Dorial Green-Beckham may be involved with according to police in Columbia.  

   Until Wednesday's public information report, the police had declined any comment on the pending investigation into Sunday's burglary involving Green-Beckham, though it's still unclear if he is a suspect, victim or witness.  

   The report says police responded to a first-degree burglary at the Brookside Townhomes about 2:30 Sunday morning.  The Columbia Missourian quotes residents as saying Green-Beckham was involved in an incident there around that time.  But no one has been arrested or charged in the case.  

   On Monday, Mizzou Coach Gary Pinkel announced the Tiger stand-out had been indefinitely suspended for an unspecified violation of team rules.

   Green-Beckham has been the subject what police have called two separate marijuana-related arrests within about 15 months, the latest in January in his home town of Springfield.  But his adoptive father, Hillcrest High School football coach John Beckham, tells the Springfield News-Leader that his suspension isn't related to those incidents.

Published in Local News
COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) - Missouri basketball player Zach Price is suspended from the team after being arrested twice for allegedly assaulting his roommate and a woman.
 
Columbia Police Sgt. Joe Bernhard says the victims reported that Price rammed their car Wednesday afternoon. That investigation was ongoing when Price was arrested on another alleged encounter with the same victims Thursday morning. Police say he hit his male roommate in the face then pushed the woman to the ground.
 
Missouri Coach Frank Haith said after the first arrest that he was "very disappointed" with Price and will discipline him accordingly.
 
Price sat out last season after transferring from Louisville.
 
Online records did not include a phone number for Price or indicate if he had an attorney.
Published in Local News
   COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) - The University of Missouri says it will demolish an apartment complex where a Columbia firefighter died Feb. 22 when a walkway collapsed.
   University Chancellor R. Bowen Loftin emphasized in making the announcement Wednesday that engineers have inspected all buildings at the University Village Apartment Complex and declared them safe for occupancy.
   Still, Loftin said the 58-year-old complex will close June 30 in the interest of safety and be razed shortly after that.
   Veteran firefighter Bruce Britt died when he became trapped by rubble while helping evacuate residents from the partial collapse of the second-floor walkway.
   The complex houses graduate students and their families. There is also a child-care center on site.
   Loftin says tenants will be allowed to terminate their leases before June 30 without financial penalties.
Published in Local News

   Students at the University of Missouri are being warned to be extra vigilant after a female student reported being raped near campus over the weekend.  

   The student told Residential Life that she'd been raped late Saturday night or very early Sunday morning in the 800 block of Richmond Avenue. University officials say they're working with the victim to make sure she receives the resources and assistance she needs.  

   Additional details about the crime haven't been released.  Police say their investigation is ongoing. 

Published in Local News
It's official. The University of Missouri Board of Curators has approved the contract extension for Tigers head football coach Gary Pinkel.
The new deal calls for a $300-thousand a year raise for Pinkel, who is now guaranteed a salary of $3.1 million per year, up from $2.8 million in 2013.
The coaching staff will also receive a boost in salary.  
 
The Tigers are coming off a 12-and-2 season, winning the Southeastern Conference Eastern Division and reaching the SEC Championship Game in the team's second season in the league.  
Mizzou earned a trip to the Cotton Bowl, beating the Oklahoma State Cowboys and finishing the season ranked fifth in the nation.  
Pinkel is the winningest coach in Missouri history, with a record of 102-and-63 in 13 seasons.
Published in Local News
COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) - A medical examiner says an 18-year-old Illinois man found dead in a University of Missouri dormitory room in October died from natural causes.
 
Boone County Chief Medical Examiner Carl Stacy says Gregory G. Holthaus, of Highland, Ill., died from sudden cardiac arrest caused by an enlarged heart.
 
The Columbia Daily Tribune reported Holthaus was found dead Oct. 13 in the Pershing group of residence halls in Columbia. He was visiting a friend who was a Missouri student.
 
Stacy's report was released to the Tribune late Friday. It says no medications or drugs, and only a small amount of alcohol, was found in Holthaus' system.
 
The report said Holthaus woke up, took a shower and ate Oct. 13, and a friend found him dead about three hours later.
Published in Local News
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