Two former Baylor University football players have been charged with sexual assault for an alleged gang rape involving a female student in 2013.
A U.S. marshal arrested former Baylor Bears running back Shamycheal Chatman, 23, in Houston, Texas, on Thursday and took him into custody, the Dallas News reported. Chatman’s arrest came one day after his former teammate Tre’Von Armstead was arrested in Port Arthur, Texas. Chatman and Armstead were indicted on the same sexual assault charges, according to the Waco Tribune-Herald.
Law enforcement told local news station KWTX 10 that Chatman and Armstead’s arrests were linked to a woman’s report that she was gang raped by two football players in 2013.
The pair of former Bears were previously named as suspects in a police report about the 2013 incident, but criminal charges were never filed against either of them, according to CBS News.
This week’s arrests are the latest in an ongoing sexual assault scandal surrounding Baylor University’s football program. The sexual assault conviction of former Baylor football player Sam Ukwuachu helped trigger the university and authorities to investigate other cases. However, a Waco appeals court overturned Ukwuachu’s conviction on Wednesday and ordered that he be given a new trial.
Baylor University has reported that 19 football players have been accused of sexual or physical assault, including four gang rapes, since 2011, according to Dallas News.
A federal Title IX lawsuit filed against the school in January by the woman who says she was gang raped in 2013 alleges that Baylor had at least 52 instances of rape. The suit, which identifies the accuser as Elizabeth Doe, says that these included five gang rapes that at least 31 different football players perpetrated between 2011 and 2014. The lawsuit also claims that Baylor’s football program created a culture of sexual violence ― and coaches and university officials did nothing to stop it.
Doe, a former member of the Baylor Bruins hostess program who graduated in 2015, accuses Armstead and Chatman of raping her after a party at the home of one of their teammates on April 18, 2013, according to her lawsuit. Doe says in the suit she was heavily intoxicated when Armstead and Chatman offered to escort her to her apartment, where they allegedly raped her.
An ESPN investigation found that Baylor University didn’t probe Doe’s sexual assault claims until September 2015.
Armstead was kicked off the Baylor football team in September 2015 for an unspecified violation of team rules, KWTX 10 reported. Chatman transferred out of Baylor to Sam Houston State University in 2013.
This week’s arrests were based on “newly discovered evidence and continued investigation,” District Attorney Abel Reyna told Dallas News.
“We have been working with Baylor and they have been cooperating in providing us information on various incidents including sexual assaults,” McLennan County District Attorney said after Armstead’s arrest, according to CBS.
The university says in a statement on its website that it has made efforts to “learn from our mistakes.”
“Baylor University is committed to being more transparent wherever possible about the sexual assault crisis that has severely impacted our campus, our alumni and the entire Baylor family,” the statement reads.