At least from a legal perspective, a prominent member of Oklahoma’s defense has dodged a serious bullet. Whether he remaisn part of the program, however, remains to be seen.
The office of the Cleveland County (Ok.) District Attorney confirmed to both the Daily Oklahoman and the Norman Transcript that it has decided to not pursue charges against OU linebacker Frank Shannon related to an alleged incident of sexual assault Jan. 20. The decision to decline prosecution, DA Greg Mashburn told the Oklahoman, was made weeks ago.
It was reported Thursday that Nelson’s was named in a Title IX sexual misconduct allegation report filed with the university in which it was alleged he sexually assaulted a female student in his apartment. Conflicting statements from the two involved prompted the DA’s office to drop the matter and the Norman Police Department to drop its investigation.
In the report, a woman alleges that early on the morning of Jan. 20 after a party, Shannon offered her a ride home but stopped by his off-campus apartment. The two went into Shannon’s bedroom, where the woman claims he pulled her pants down and tried to forcibly have sex with her.
The woman and Shannon both say they knew each other before the incident. Shannon denied the allegations in the report, saying that the woman laid on top of him, kissed him and removed her own clothes, but that after an argument over whether or not she was menstruating, he went to the bathroom and she left the apartment.
The Oklahoman does write that “Shannon’s future at the University of Oklahoma, however, remains very much in limbo while an independent OU investigation runs its course, a legal requirement under Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972.” OU’s student conduct office could impose sanctions on Shannon, up to and including a dismissal from the university.
As a redshirt sophomore in 2013, Shannon started all 13 games and led the Sooners in tackles with 92. He neither practiced last Thursday nor played in Saturday’s spring game due to what head coach Bob Stoops described as personal reasons.