Former BGSU football player accused of attempted rape suspended from university

William M. Houston (Source: Bowling Green Police)
William M. Houston (Source: Bowling Green Police)

BOWLING GREEN, OH (Toledo News Now) - A former Bowling Green State University football player accused of sexual assault has been suspended from the university for two years.

William Houston, 19, of Mansfield, OH, was charged with attempted rape by Bowling Green Police back in July.

According to a Bowling Green Police report, a woman told police she had allowed Houston to stay with her. The woman told police she woke up to find Houston on top of her sleeping roommate with his pants down. The report also says Houston was holding the victim down by force and put his hand inside her underwear.

According to the report, Houston ran from the residence when the woman saw this and began to scream. Police say they found Houston in an on-campus residence hall and took him to the BG Police station for questioning. Houston was later charged with attempted rape.

The sophomore running back led the team with 11 touchdowns last season.

The school says it conducted an investigation and hearing under the university's code of student conduct and found Houston responsible for "sexual contact without permission."

BGSU had placed Houston on interim suspension on July 21, the day after his arrest.

Bowling Green State University released the following statement on the matter:

Bowling Green State University has suspended William Houston, 19, of Mansfield, Ohio, for two years following an investigation and hearing under the University's code of student conduct.

The University found Houston responsible for "sexual contact without permission."

BGSU had placed Houston on interim suspension on July 21, following his arrest for attempted rape after an off-campus incident on July 20.

The U.S. Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act permits universities to release the outcome of a student conduct process in instances where the behavior includes a violent action.

The University will have no further comment.

The news of the suspension has many students shocked, but relieved that the school is taking action. Sophomore Tim Lewis says he lived on the same floor as Houston last year and never would have imagined Houston could do something like this.

"It was probably a very traumatic experience for the girl involved," Lewis said. "I'm glad they're taking some sort of action towards it because it's not exactly acceptable."

Another student, Junior Candace Bridges, says she's glad the university is taking this seriously.

"It really shows that our school actually cares about our safety, and it doesn't matter if they're a star athlete or a football player - they're going to take action against it," she said.

Houston is due back in court Sept. 8.

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