A federal appeals court allowed convicted rapist Ma’lik Richmond to play in a college football game today (Sept. 16).
His school, Youngstown State, had tried to ban Richmond from playing, after allowing him to join the team. Richmond sued Youngstown last week, and a district court sided with the 21-year-old, allowing him to play for at least the next 14 days until a hearing to decide whether to make the decision permanent. A federal court dismissed the school’s appeal.
In 2013, Richmond was convicted, along with another student at Steubenville High School in Ohio, of raping a 16-year-old girl while she was intoxicated, and later taking pictures of her naked body. The case attracted widespread attention in the United States.
Richmond served 10 months in juvenile detention after his conviction. He attended two other colleges before transferring to Youngstown State. The university was prepared to let him play football until a female student there filed a petition to get Richmond kicked off the team, and Youngstown changed its mind.
Richmond’s lawsuit says the university is “infected by an anti-male bias that has swept across America’s universities and colleges.”
The school’s press office didn’t immediately return a phone call seeking comment. At the time of this writing, the Youngstown State Penguins were beating the Central Connecticut Blue Devils, 28-0.