No charges after drug investigation of wrestlers

Published 9:52 am Thursday, June 30, 2016

MINNEAPOLIS — No criminal charges will be filed in an investigation of University of Minnesota wrestlers allegedly involved in the sale and use of the anti-anxiety drug Xanax, prosecutors said Wednesday.

In a report, university police investigators said Hennepin County prosecutors declined to pursue the case due to “lack of evidence.”

“We have declined to press charges at this time,” Jean Heyer, a spokeswoman for the prosecutor’s office, told The Associated Press. She would not elaborate.

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Also, Minneapolis City Attorney Susan Segal said there was not enough evidence to support misdemeanor or gross misdemeanor charges against wrestling coach J Robinson. Segal said university police presented their case to her office last week, after going to the county attorney’s office.

“We reviewed all the evidence and there was not sufficient evidence to support charges in the case and it’s as simple as that,” Segal said. University officials did not inquire about drug charges against wrestlers who were allegedly involved, the newspaper reported.

Campus police had been conducting an investigation into a team member’s disputed allegation that Robinson attempted to cover up the widespread sale and use of Xanax by his wrestlers.

Robinson was placed on paid leave on June 1. The university launched its own investigation last month. The internal investigation continues, and the university is not commenting while that inquiry remains active, university spokesman Evan Lapiska said Wednesday.

Robinson’s attorney, Ryan Kaess, said he was pleased with the decision.

“I’m glad that prosecutors did the right thing,” he told AP.

Kaess said Tuesday that the coach was trying to help his athletes by denying police access. He also called the alleged Xanax sales “ticky-tack violations.”