Portland, Ore.- Portland NBC station KGW-TV has confirmed reports Oregon State pitcher Luke Heimlich pleaded guilty to sexually molesting a 6-year-old female family member when he was 15 years old.
The news first surfaced after Heimlich failed to complete an annual check-in as a registered sex offender in April. Oregon State’s ace left-handed pitcher registered in Benton County after he arrived at Oregon State.
The crime occurred in August 2012 in Heimlich’s hometown of Puyallup, Washington, according to court documents obtained by The Oregonian and KGW. The state of Washington classified Heimlich as a low-risk sex offender.
According to The Oregonian, it is unknown if Heimlich told Oregon State about the crime before he arrived on campus in 2014. The school is informed by Oregon State Police of all registered sex offenders among its student body.
KGW asked Oregon State if it knew that Heimlich was a registered sex offender or when it found out, but the school said it couldn’t comment because student information is protected by the federal Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act.
The school did release a statement, which stated in part that the school takes the report very seriously and does not condone the conduct as reported.
The NCAA does not have a policy that bars convicted felons from competing in intercollegiate play, deferring instead to athletic conferences and schools. The Pac-12 Conference defers to schools.
Oregon State does not have a policy barring student-athletes with prior felony convictions from competing. The athletic department doesn’t ask students to disclose criminal convictions during the admissions process.
According to KGW, Heimlich pleaded guilty to one count of molestation between February 2011 and December 2011, during which he was 15. The other charge was dismissed as part of a plea bargain. He admitted he had sexual contact with the girl in his own handwriting.
The Oregon State pitcher completed a diversion program, was given two years of probation and attended sex offender treatment for two years, according to court records.
His original sentence of 40 weeks of detention was suspended and he served no time because he successfully completed probation.
Article edited by NBC5 News, originally posted on KGW.com