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Texas WRs charged with sexual assault

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Updated: 7/24 3:40 pm

Austin, TX (SportsNetwork.com) - Two University of Texas wide receivers were arrested Thursday and charged with felony sexual assault.

Texas coach Charlie Strong said in a statement that Kendall Sanders and Montrel Meander were suspended indefinitely and would no longer be participating in any team functions.

Sanders and Meander were both charged with second-degree felony sexual assault after they were accused of raping a woman last month inside a university dorm room.

According to an arrest affidavit, the woman, who said she has known both men for over a year, ran into Meander while she was out with friends the night of June 20.

Early the next morning, she accepted a ride back to a dormitory from Meander and went to his room, where she agreed to have consensual sex with him after taking a shower, according to the affidavit.

After several minutes, there was a knock at the door and Meander got up to let Sanders in. After Sanders undressed, he forcibly penetrated her vaginally and anally, according to police.

Meander re-entered the room and joined in the assault after the alleged victim "withdrew her consent to penetration by Meander," according to the affidavit.

The woman "asked Meander why he was doing this and he did not reply, he just stared at her," the affidavit says.

University of Texas Police Chief David Carter said at a news conference that the incident "is clearly similar to a national problem and concern related to sexual assaults on campus."

Carter cited surveys saying as many as one woman in five is sexually assaulted during their college years.

"This case follows that pattern," Carter said. "It does not involve strangers but rather students who knew each other. ... This case involves the issue of initial consent from one person and not the other, and then the initial consent withdrawn."

Strong said he's "been monitoring and addressing the situation" since it was brought to his attention.

"It's been made clear to everyone on our team that treating women with respect is one of our core values, and I'm extremely disappointed that two young men in our program have been accused of not doing that," Strong said. "With the recent charges against them, they have been suspended indefinitely from our football team and will no longer participate in any team functions."

According to the affidavit, the woman asked to leave and Sanders replied that she "could leave after I'm done." The woman "closed her eyes and tried to emotionally remove herself from the situation."

"At that time she was not able to discern who was doing what to her," police said.

The woman told police she saw a flash and suspected one of the men had used a cell phone to take a picture or video of her.

Sanders was charged with improper photography or visual recording, a state jail felony, after detectives found at least one photo of the woman on his phone while he was being questioned.

Police said Sanders and Meander exchanged texts about what each one was saying while they were being interviewed separately at the University of Texas police station.

Bail for both men was set at $75,000 on the sexual assault charge. Bail for Sanders' other charge was $20,000. Both men were booked and released pending an upcoming court date.

Sanders had 37 catches for 361 yards and a touchdown as a sophomore last season. Meander was a redshirt freshman.

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