LOGAN, Utah (ABC4) – In the wake of comments he made to the football team regarding female members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Utah State University police chief Earl Morris has resigned.
The university stated in a news release on Thursday that Morris had been placed on administrative leave the day prior to tendering his resignation.
Multiple local news outlets had reported that Morris, when addressing the entire Utah State football team, cautioned the Aggie athletes about sexual encounters in a “Mormon community.”
A recorded conversation caught Morris explaining that, in his view, female members of the LDS faith may regret a sexual encounter after the fact and may find it easier to refer to the act as non-consensual when speaking about it to others.
In the news release, the university confirmed that Morris had made such remarks and called his comments “reprehensible and unacceptable.”
USU Police veteran Kent Harris has been named the interim Director of Public Safety and Chief of Police, according to officials.
Utah State and its football players have been under fire this week, as a former student has alleged that the university mishandled her report after she informed officials she had been raped by a player.
There has been some troubling recent history regarding rape by football players at Utah State.
In April, sophomore football player Izzy Vaifo’ou was arrested after police responded to reports of sexual assault on campus. In that incident, Vaifo’ou admitted to officers that he had stripped down to his underwear, gotten in bed with a female student, and touched her over her clothes after entering her dorm uninvited.
Former star player Torrey Green was sentenced to 26 years to life in prison in 2019 for a string of sexual assaults while he was at the school from 2013 to 2015. Despite allegations mounted against him while he was a student, Green still graduated from the university and was a member of the Atlanta Falcons when his allegations caught up to him in 2016.
The Utah State football team is currently in California, preparing to play Oregon State in the Jimmy Kimmel LA Bowl on Saturday.