Sexual assault charges against former Cornell basketball player Xavier Eaglin dismissed

On Sat., Mar. 5, 2016, the Cornell men’s basketball team completed its season with a 75-71 victory over the Brown Bears in what turned out to be coach Bill Courtney’s last game as head coach of the Big Red. Little did anyone at Newman Arena realize that it would be the last game for then-first year Xavier Eaglin.  

One day later, Eaglin, a 6-foot-7, 205-pound 19-year-old, was arrested by the Cornell University Police Department (CUPD) on charges of rape, sexual assault and strangulation, according to the Cornell Daily Sun, which reported Tuesday that the charges were dismissed.

The allegations, from a fellow Cornell student, led to four Class B felony charges, one first-degree rape and three first-degree criminal sexual acts, as well as one Class A misdemeanor charge for criminal obstruction of breathing or blood circulation, per the Daily Sun.

The Daily Sun reported last year that the CUPD said it had a taped phone call between Eaglin and another person alongside a sworn statement where he confesses to forced sex acts.

A preliminary hearing was waived, per the Daily Sun, and the case was divested to Tompkins County Court pending grand jury action. Eaglin was dismissed from the Cornell basketball team and banned from the campus, according to the Ithaca Voice. The Daily Sun reported that after his parents bailed him out of jail, Eaglin returned to Texas, where he has attended a junior college.

A native of Raywood, Texas, Eaglin attended Dayton High School in the Houston suburbs.  For two seasons, he was chosen for the all-area team.  In his senior campaign, he was named first-team all-district as well as the District’s Player of the Year.  According to Verbal Commits, he chose to attend Cornell over Yale, Columbia and Loyola of Maryland.  In his first year, Eaglin played in seven games for nine minutes for the Big Red without scoring any points.

The Daily Sun additionally reported Tuesday that Eaglin and his attorney successfully moved to have the charges dismissed in April.  Additionally, all photos of him and fingerprints taken after his arrest will be destroyed or returned to him, and records of his arrest will be sealed.  There has been no response from the Tompkins County District Attorney’s office and no reason given for the dismissal.

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