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Channel 9 learns new information about Livingstone College abuse allegations

SALISBURY, N.C. — Channel 9 has learned new information about abuse allegations within a Salisbury college’s athletic department.

Last month, Channel 9 spoke to a parent of a Livingstone College student-athlete about concerns over “toxic bullying” in the women’s basketball program.

The parent said coaches didn’t provide food to players, belittled them, and punished players after losing games.

On Nov. 21, the university president sent a statement to Channel 9 addressing the allegations. It said in part, “It’s important that we examine the facts and the findings, and remove the appearance of influence and interference from the process.”

The parent, Gregory Turner, said President Davis told him he has suspended some members of the coaching staff. Turner added the university has appointed investigators to look into the claims and report their findings.

In October, Turner told Channel 9 his daughter played basketball for Livingstone College, and her experience within the program severely impacted her mental health.

“My daughter would call and say some things were going on, but we had no idea it was this bad,” Turner said.

He has as many unanswered questions as he does concerns. After three years in the program, Turner’s daughter said she was left traumatized.

“The impact, we can’t even measure that at this point,” Turner said. “My daughter is in therapy; she was in therapy there. She’s no longer there, now she’s here with us and I can say she’s not in a place right now where she can discuss this.”

Channel 9 contacted the school that month about the investigation, but in a statement, officials said nothing was found.

“Livingstone College’s due diligence to this matter was consistent with the rules and regulations of the NCAA, the CIAA and our own policies,” it read. “Our investigation found no evidence to support the allegations presented. Therefore, the case is closed.”

The full statement Livingstone sent Nov. 21 is below:

“As the 13th president of Livingstone College, after examining a formal complaint initiated by Mr. Gregory Turner, I think it’s important that we examine the facts and the findings, and remove the appearance of influence and interference from the process as we expand the initial inquiry, keeping in mind that the safety and well-being of our student-athletes are our greatest concern.”

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