4 Vanderbilt football players kicked off team, suspended

4 Vanderbilt football players kicked off team, suspended from school

Posted: Updated: July 1, 2013 03:55 PM

Four members of the Vanderbilt University football team have been dismissed from the team and suspended from the university amid an investigation into an alleged sexual act that occurred in an on-campus dormitory.

The alleged assault occurred June 23 and the victim is a female student at the school who also works on campus.

The Metro Police Department's Sex Crimes Unit launched an investigation Wednesday after they were notified by Vanderbilt campus police.

Since then, a number of interviews have been conducted and evidence has been collected for examination by police department experts and TBI Crime Lab scientists.

In the meantime, the suspended students, whose identities have not been released, cannot enter campus for any purpose without explicit permission from school officials.

"The well-being of our students is of paramount concern to us, and we will not tolerate any actions that threaten student safety and security," Beth Fortune, Vanderbilt Vice Chancellor for Public Affairs, said in the release issued Saturday.

On Monday, the father of four-star Vanderbilt recruit Emmanuel Smith added, "We want the world to know we believe in Coach Franklin and what he's doing at Vanderbilt. He has not only preached value and accountability, but he has been nothing but open about the family atmosphere he's bringing. This traumatic event should not be, and is not, an indictment on him, his staff or the university."

No arrests have been made.

According to a source, six other student athletes are also under investigation.

The university said it would comment further when appropriate.

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