Sports

Coastal football player accused in sexual assault case

Coastal Carolina University freshman football player William Chandler was charged Wednesday with third-degree criminal sexual conduct, according to a police report provided by the university's department of public safety.

An arrest warrant states that Chandler, a former Aynor High standout, forced the victim to have sexual intercourse with him against her will.

Coastal Carolina's athletics director Warren "Moose" Koegel said Chandler has been suspended from the university and football team on an interim basis.

"We are not going to do anything more than that until we find out exactly what happened," Koegel said. "At this point I'm not going to say anything else."

Chandler was arrested by campus police and booked at 3:49 a.m. Wednesday morning at J. Reuben Long Detention Center and released Wednesday afternoon after posting $10,000 bond.

Coastal coach David Bennett said he has not spoken with Chandler.

"He is a great young man," Bennett said.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with both parties."

According to state law, third-degree criminal sexual conduct is defined as a situation in which a person "uses force or coercion to accomplish the sexual battery in the absence of aggravating circumstances," or the person "knows or has reason to know that the victim is mentally defective, mentally incapacitated, or physically helpless and aggravated force or aggravated coercion was not used to accomplish sexual battery."

According to a release from the university, a final determination of Chandler's status as a student will be made through the campus judicial process. Chandler will be suspended from football activities until the outcome of the legal and campus judicial process.

"It is standard operating procedure when charges are brought" upon a student, CCU spokeswoman Anne Monk said. "We hope to begin the student judicial process in the next 10 days."

Chandler was a member of Coastal's signing class in February. At Aynor he lettered in football, basketball and baseball and finished with the second-most home runs in S.C. prep history.

It is the fifth arrest involving CCU football players since last August.

When reached by phone Wednesday night, Chandler's father declined to comment on the charges. Will Chandler could not be reached for comment.

-- The (Myrtle Beach) Sun News

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