ESPN’s Outside the Lines released an expose Friday detailing how poorly Michigan State University has handled sexual assault and violence towards women cases, in the light of former doctor Larry Nassar pleading guilty to sexually assaulting over 100 girls and women while employed by the university.
In the report, ESPN details two events by Travis Walton, a Lima Senior graduate who played basketball at Michigan State and later returned as a student assistant.
In 2010, according to Ashley Thompson (who was a student at MSU at the time), Walton punched her in the face once and swung at her a second time before he was removed from the bar by bouncers. Walton spent the 2009-2010 season as a student assistant coach for Tom Izzo, and spent the year living in Izzo’s basement.
Walton was charged with assault and battery but later pled guilty to a littering charge.
Later in 2010, Walton was again under investigation, this time for an alleged sexual assault.
A woman and her parents filed a report with Michigan State’s athletic department claiming Walton and two players had raped her at an off-campus apartment.
The woman did not file a police report, but did discuss it with MSU’s athletic department after hearing Walton and the two players attempted an assault on a student co-worker in the same manner.
In a letter, Michigan State sexual assault counselor Lauren Allswede says Walton was then fired from his position as a student assistant with the men’s basketball program.
In the report, Walton, who is now a coach in the NBA’s G-League with the Agua Caliente Clippers, denied having physical contact with Thompson and claimed to have no knowledge of a rape accusation against him.
“I don’t recall anything from that. Wow,” Walton told ESPN.