No charges for U wrestlers in sexual assault case

The wrestlers were arrested in June on suspicion of criminal sexual conduct.

Gable Steveson stands on the podium after receiving his second place award on Sunday, March 10, 2019 at Williams Arena in Minneapolis. Steveson lost the match against Anthony Cassar of Penn State 4-3.

Elle Moulin

Gable Steveson stands on the podium after receiving his second place award on Sunday, March 10, 2019 at Williams Arena in Minneapolis. Steveson lost the match against Anthony Cassar of Penn State 4-3.

Nolan O'Hara

Gophers wrestlers Gable Steveson and Dylan Martinez will not be charged in a sexual assault investigation, Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman said on Dec. 20.

Steveson and Martinez were arrested in June on suspicion of criminal sexual conduct. They were released from jail without being charged, but the investigation remained open. Few details have been released in order to protect the victim, according to Freeman. He did say the Minneapolis sex crimes unit conducted a “very thorough” and “complete” investigation. 

“In the interest of justice, there is inadequate evidence to fairly charge and prosecute this case,” he said on Dec. 20 in a press conference announcing the decision. 

While it was unclear whether Martinez had representation, Steveson’s attorney, Christa Groshek, was vocal in saying her client maintained his innocence. Following their June arrest, Steveson and Martinez were suspended from all team activities. With Friday’s decision, the University issued a statement declaring both athletes eligible to return to team activities. 

“We became aware today of the Hennepin County Attorney’s decision to bring no charges against two of our student-athletes. In accordance with our Student-Athlete Code of Conduct, we have decided to lift the suspension of the student-athletes involved. They are immediately eligible to rejoin team activities,” the statement read. 

Following his reinstatement, Steveson made his season debut that night against South Dakota State. He earned a 21-8 major decision over Blake Wolters and landed 10 takedowns. Since his debut, Steveson has gone undefeated and is currently the No. 1 ranked heavyweight. 

With Steveson back in the lineup, the Gophers have their eyes set on the NCAA championships, taking place just across the river at U.S. Bank Stadium. Between the NCAA championships in March, and the Olympic trials in April, it will be a busy spring for the top-ranked heavyweight.