MU's Dixon accused of rape, but no charges filed

COLUMBIA, Mo. - 41 Action News uncovered more details about an alleged sexual assault that may be the reason a star University of Missouri basketball player has been benched. Guard Michael Dixon has been suspended indefinitely from the team since October for a "violation of team rules."

Neither the University of Missouri nor the school's Athletic Department will confirm if Dixon's suspension has anything to do with a police investigation into a rape allegation made against Dixon by another University of Missouri student.

RELATED | Missouri coach Haith suspends Dixon indefinitely http://bit.ly/TeXy1u

Police closed the investigation on Nov. 16, after prosecutors declined to file charges.

41 Action News investigators obtained records from that police investigation. The incident allegedly happened on Aug. 20 at 12:15 a.m. She called police at 11:31 p.m. on that same day.

In the report, a student told police she and Dixon were talking in her bedroom following Dixon's return from a trip to Paris.

The student alleged that she told Dixon she did not want to have sex with him. She told police that while they were talking, Dixon asked her to turn off the lights because his "eyes hurt."

She told detectives she continued to tell Dixon she would not have sex with him and that she only wanted to kiss him, but that Dixon told her to "just chill out." She said Dixon then pulled down her pajama bottoms had sex with her despite her objections.

The police report also indicates that after having sex with the student, Dixon asked her for oral sex. The student said she instead touched him physically.

The student told police she was in pain following the alleged sexual encounter. Police advised her to go to the hospital for a rape kit. They also kept her clothes, a towel  and a condom as evidence.

The student also provided police several text messages between herself and Dixon following the incident. One text message sent two minutes after Dixon reportedly left her residence said they should hang out together and that she was sorry for yelling at him. According to the police report, the texts also said she didn't want him using her just for sex.

She also told police prior to Dixon coming to her residence, he had indicated in text messages that he wanted to have sex with her. She also turned over texts from a week after she reported the incident to police.

One message from the student said: "I wanted to talk to you about when I last hung out with you. I just felt like you were using me. Like you didn't want to do anything else with me but have sex."

Dixon wrote back, "I'm gonna text you back after I leave the gym."

The student wrote back, "You promise?"

Dixon did not reply to that text.  The student texted Dixon the next day: "Text me tomorrow."

Dixon wrote, "Yep."

The student wrote, "I didn't know you were up. Let's just talk now."

Dixon wrote, "I'm going to bed," and the victim responded with, "I guess."

The police report contained another text message exchange on Sept. 4.

In it, the woman texts Dixon "Just delete my number. Don't want anything to do with you."

Dixon texts back, "I'm sorry its not you I told you that I don't have any problems with u I have just had to rethink my priorities and do what's best for me."

Boone County Prosecuting Attorney Tracy Gonzales reviewed the police investigation and declined to file charges in the case. Police records show Gonzales indicated there was "insufficient evidence to file criminal charges."

Dixon was never interviewed as part of the investigation.

Even though Dixon was not charged in the case, the matter now appears to be before the university's Student Conduct Committee. The university will not comment due to student privacy laws.  

Any university student found in violation of the university's Student Code of Conduct is subject to discipline by the Student Conduct Committee.

RELATED | Student Code of Conduct http://bit.ly/MfmiVa

The University of Missouri provided 41 Action News the following information about how the committee works:

When any student is accused of violating the university's standard of conduct, he/she is subject to the Rules of Procedures in Student Conduct Matters (Rule 200.020). This process is in place to insure that the requirements of procedural due process will be fulfilled by the university.

During the informal process, an informal investigation will be conducted by The Office of Student Life's Judicial Coordinator Donell Young. Mr. Young has the authority to make a determination and to impose appropriate sanctions or to move the matter to the formal stage.

During a formal process, a Student Conduct Committee, composed of faculty and students, will be appointed by the Chancellor and will have the

authority to impose sanctions which may range from a warning to permanent separation of the student from the university (expulsion).

When a charged student is expelled, dismissed, or suspended from the University by the Committee, the student may appeal the decision stating the reason reasons for appeal in detail to the Chancellor within ten calendar days after notification of the decision of the Committee.

The Chancellor shall review the record of the case and the appeal and may affirm, reverse, or remand the case for further proceedings and shall notify each party in writing of the decision of the appeal. The action of the Chancellor shall be final unless it is to remand the matter for further proceedings.

University of Missouri students and fans have taken to Twitter under the hashtag #FreeMichaelDixon to ask that the Tiger star be returned to the lineup.

Some of Dixon's teammates have also taken to Twitter to defend him.

"Michael has handled this situation w/ nothing but poise, class and professionalism. Would be awesome if his University would do the same," tweeted former teammate Kim English.

Dixon also took to Twitter writing on Nov. 17: "Just one big nightmare wish it would all just be over."

The University of Missouri Athletic Department said Dixon continues to be suspended indefinitely for a "violation of team rules." An athletic department spokesman says the suspension is team imposed and that the athletic department will not have further comment until there is a change in his playing status.

Melissa Yeager can be reached at melissa.yeager@kshb.com. You can also follow her on twitter @MelissaKSHB or connect on Facebook.

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