BC diver suspended from University of Utah team over "serious" allegation

May 10 2023, 7:25 pm

A young man from Vancouver Island has been suspended from the University of Utah’s diving team over a “serious” allegation involving him and other members of the team.

Utah Athletics confirmed Ben Smyth was suspended from all team activities on February 20 after the department was made aware of a “serious allegation” involving several athletes on the team.

The University’s Office of Equal Opportunity, where students can report discrimination, harassment, or sexual misconduct, informed the athletics department of the pending investigation on February 16.

“We take matters of this type very seriously and have continued to monitor the situation,” the athletics department said in a statement.

According to Fox13 Salt Lake City, the allegation was one of sexual assault made by a female student. The station also reported that Smyth fled the country over the course of the investigation and could now be back in BC. Daily Hive has not confirmed the athlete’s whereabouts.

Smyth accepted a scholarship to the Salt Lake City school’s swim and dive team in fall 2020, according to a congratulatory post by Claremont Secondary School in Victoria, BC.

Fox13 also reported Smyth is facing charges in connection with the alleged sexual assault. Daily Hive has reached out to the Salt Lake City district attorney for confirmation.

BC RCMP said they are not aware of the case, and didn’t respond to a question about whether they were searching for Smyth. Canada’s Department of Justice said it couldn’t comment publicly about any potential extradition process.

“Extradition requests are confidential state-to-state communications, so we cannot confirm or deny the existence of a potential request until made public by the courts,” a spokesperson said.

Megan DevlinMegan Devlin

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