By Clay Horning
Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops confirmed Thursday that Justin Chaisson has enrolled at the university and will be on the Sooner roster this fall. Chaisson’s status with the football program has been a source of debate since the 18-year-old pled guilty to four gross misdemeanors in a Clark County Nev. Court in connection with an incident in which a former girlfriend was the victim.
“We have thoroughly reviewed the facts and disposition of any and all allegations against Justin as determined by the independent assessment of the district attorney’s office and the court system. Based on their investigation of the facts, all allegations of the use of any weapon have been dismissed and are not the basis of any charge against or plea by him,” Stoops said in a released statement. “Our decision is appropriately based on the independent determination and action of the district attorney’s office and the court system.”
Chaisson is one of the top signees of OU’s 2009 recruiting class. The 6-foot-4, 250-pound defensive end from Bishop Gorman High School in Las Vegas had 148 tackles and 28 sacks over his final two high school seasons. He turned down an offer from Florida to sign with the Sooners in February.
His status with OU came into question after he was arrested March 17.
According to a Las Vegas police report, the girl told police Chaisson had forced her into his sports utility vehicle, punched her and threatened her with a screwdriver.
Chaisson initially faced three felony charges: assault with a deadly weapon, false imprisonment and coercion.
A felony conviction would have prevented him from receiving a scholarship at OU. He reached a plea agreement on May 6 to misdemeanor charges of two counts of false imprisonment, one count of malicious destruction of private property and one count of conspiracy to commit coercion and/or false imprisonment.
As part of Chaisson’s guilty plea he agreed to three years of probation, 120 hours of community service and he must avoid contact with the ex-girlfriend and a female witness to the crime.
Stoops indicated Chaisson’s behavior will be under tight scrutiny while he is at OU.
“We take these matters of conduct very seriously,” Stoops said. “Justin fully understands our expectations and his responsibilities of exemplary behavior and professional counseling. He knows the consequences if he does not meet those requirements.”