Baller Back on Boards: Longwood Athlete Convicted of Sexual Battery, Reinstated to Basketball Team Pending Outcome of Appeal

   Written by on February 27, 2015 at 12:25 pm

Longwood University forward, Jason Pimentel, was convicted on February 2 , 2015 in Prince Edward County District Court of misdemeanor sexual battery. He immediately filed an appeal to the Circuit Court.

pimentel_jason-e1424059460219He was arrested and charged with the crime early in November, and was released on bond pending trial. He was, however, at that time, suspended “indefinitely” by Longwood Director of Athletics, Troy Austin. Pimentel did not play the first 25 games of the season.

According to sources, the Longwood Athletics Department left Pimentel’s play status unchanged after the February 2 conviction and subsequent appeal to higher court. He did, however, receive a full reinstatement immediately prior to a February 14 game at home against Charleston Southern University.

Jayson Gee, the men’s head basketball coach for Longwood University, explained in a press release regarding Pimentel’s full reinstatement; “Jason has gone through the university’s disciplinary process and met his obligations under the student code of conduct, and he has now sat out three months of his junior season. All along, I have evaluated whether he has taken ownership of this matter, understood its seriousness, and learned from it.”

In a statement to the Rotunda, Longwood University’s newspaper, Longwood spokesman Matt McWilliams said; “There is a student disciplinary process here at Longwood, and that process has been resolved in this case. Mr. Pimentel is enrolled at Longwood, and he is eligible to participate in athletic competition.”

Pimentel was reinstated with five regular season conference games remaining in the season. The Big South Conference tournament begins on March 3 . The winner of that tournament is given a bid to play in the NCAA basketball tournament. Right now, Longwood is in ninth place in conference play with five games to play. The top seven teams in the conference will receive NCAA bids.  According to sources, Longwood’s Athletic Director Troy Austin said that Pimentel’s reinstatement was “not tied to team performance;” “ The decision wasn’t made on whether  he can help us win or not.” (Lyles, T. Rotunda. 2/2015)

Jason Pimentel’s appeal is scheduled to be heard on April 21 , 2015. The charge he was convicted of is Virginia Class 1 misdemeanor sexual battery, 18.2-67.4.  as defined by code 18.2-67.10 of the sexual abuse. “The accused intentionally touches the complaining witness’ intimate parts or material directly covering those body parts.” The crime is punishable by “confinement in jail for not more than twelve months, and a fine of not more than $2,500.”

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