White pleads guilty to Mall of America theft

The freshman has been suspended from the basketball team since Nov. 3

by Michael Rietmulder

Suspended Gophers basketball player Royce White plead guilty to misdemeanor charges of theft and disorderly conduct Wednesday morning. The disorderly conduct charge was lowered from fifth-degree assault. âÄúIt was time to be done,âÄù said WhiteâÄôs attorney F. Clayton Tyler outside the Hennepin County District Court in Edina. The charges stem from an Oct. 13 incident at the Mall of America. White admitted to stealing $100 worth of merchandise and getting into an argument with a security guard. White was fined $300 for court costs and another $300 for the theft. The charges will be removed from his record if he avoids the same or similar charges for one year. White was also banned from the Mall of America for one year. Standing solemnly beside his lawyer, White did not comment on his situation, instead deferring to Tyler. On Nov. 3, White was suspended from the team for violating team rules. Coach Tubby Smith has indicated that the freshman forward will remain suspended while his legal issues are being sorted out. White is also a suspect in a separate on-campus theft. A laptop was stolen out of a dorm room in Territorial Hall on Nov. 7. Security tapes allegedly show the 6’8” 249 pound freshman leaving the building around the time of the theft. Tyler says his client denies taking the laptop and that they have been cooperating with University police. âÄúHopefully weâÄôll try to get this behind us within the next week or so,âÄù Tyler said. White remains suspended from the team, University athletics spokesman Garry Bowman said. Athletics Director Joel Maturi will discuss WhiteâÄôs status with Smith once he returns from an away game in Florida, Bowman said.