Sean McMinn, Jacob Lauing and Celina Oseguera
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UPDATE 6:50 p.m.:
The attempted robbery at the Delta Sigma Phi fraternity house Sunday morning may have involved the anti-anxiety drug Xanax, according to an article from the San Luis Obispo Tribune.
A witness in the case mentioned the drug during the investigation process, the article stated.
“It’s an avenue that we’re looking at,” San Luis Obispo Police Department Capt. Keith Storton told Mustang News about the possibility of drug involvement.
Storton said drug involvement with the robbery is still not concrete and called for further investigation.
The possible involvement of Xanax in this case marks a “disturbing” similarity to the 2013 shooting of ex-Cal Poly football player Geoffrey Hyde, where a Xanax drug deal allegedly went wrong, SLOPD Chief Steve Gesell said in the article.
However, former Delta Sigma Phi president and current chapter house resident Gear McMillan denied Xanax as a factor in the robbery.
“If there was something like that, I would know,” McMillan said.
According to McMillan, the home may have been targeted, not for drugs, but because it looked easy to break into. The fact that there were laptops in the home may have enticed the suspects as well, McMillan said.
There have been robberies in the area before, McMillan said.
The fraternity house does not have an alarm system to help prevent robberies. Instead, the members keep a look out for each other and the home. The members are the security system, McMillan said.
Also, according to McMillan, the only tie the fraternity had with the suspects was one of the fraternity brothers used to live in the same freshmen dorm tower as one of the suspects. They had spent time with each other before as well, McMillan said.
McMillan is living in the fraternity house for the summer, but was not at the home when the incident occurred.
Cal Poly football head coach Tim Walsh isn’t one to sugar coat, so he didn’t feel the need to be inauthentically cordial on Monday evening.
“I’ve had better days,” Walsh said when asked how he was doing. “Good to get back out on the field, I’ll put it that way.”
Hours after word leaked that five Mustangs had been arrested and suspended in connection to the Delta Sigma Phi house robbery this past weekend, Walsh once again held nothing back.
“We’re devastated, we’re sad, we’re mad, we’re upset,” Walsh said. “The players that were involved, they’re suspended. Their actions definitely deserve that.”
The Cal Poly coaches have plenty of work in the coming weeks, Walsh said, to train suitable replacements for the team’s season opener at New Mexico State on Aug 28. While it’s uncertain how long the five players will be out, Walsh labeled the suspension as one he “doesn’t foresee being overturned shortly.”
“Adversity creates cohesion,” Walsh said. “If we choose to do that as a football team, we’ll come closer together, work our way through the adversity we’re facing right now.”
The robbery, which occurred early Sunday morning, marks the second time in the past year that the Cal Poly football team has been associated with an off-campus altercation. In November, graduate assistant coach Geoffrey Hyde was shot in the back on the 400 block of Buena Vista Avenue.
Walsh said — considering the two incidents — some “possible” team policy changes could be up for discussion over the next couple weeks.
“That’s a part of life,” Walsh said. “There’s good times and there’s bad times. How you deal with both is extremely important to the successes you’re going to have as a family and as a football team.”
Five Cal Poly football players were arrested over the weekend in connection with an armed robbery at the Delta Sigma Phi fraternity house.
Cameron Akins, 19, was arrested on suspicion of robbery with a firearm, assault on a police officer and resisting arrest early Sunday morning after a confrontation with a police officer outside the fraternity house on California Boulevard, according to a San Luis Obispo Police Department (SLOPD) news release sent Monday.
Cortland Fort, 20, who officers found driving away from the area, was arrested on suspicion of robbery.
An investigation following the alleged robbery led to the arrest of three more football players: Dominique Love, 19, was arrested on suspicion of robbery, while Jake Brito, 18, and Kristaan Ivory, 20, were arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to commit robbery. All three were arrested on Cal Poly’s campus.
The arrests started early Sunday morning when SLOPD officers responded to a 911 call saying someone was robbing the fraternity house with handgun.
When the first officer arrived on scene, he saw Akins confronting one of the victims in the courtyard of the house, the news release said. The officer drew his gun and demanded Akin’s compliance.
Police said Akins then attempted to run away. Not seeing a weapon, the officer holstered his gun and chased down Akins on foot, the news release said. Akins allegedly resisted arrest and bit one of the officers who was restraining him. Police managed to arrest Akins with the help of a couple bystanders and recovered a handgun from the suspect, according to the news release.
No one was seriously injured.
Cal Poly spokesperson Matt Lazier issued the following statement via email Monday.
“Cal Poly recognizes the seriousness of these charges and will move swiftly to take the appropriate responses. The university will do all it can to work with San Luis Obispo police in helping to determine what occurred. The five football student-athletes alleged to have taken part in this incident have been suspended from all team activities effective immediately, and the university will conduct internal investigations into possible student conduct violations. As always, any violation of the university’s student conduct policies will not be tolerated and will be dealt with summarily, to ensure that student health and safety and the university’s academic environment are maintained.”
All five suspects are no longer listed on the football team’s GoPoly.com roster. The team had a Sunday morning meeting about the robbery, sports information director Eric Burdick said.
Ivory, a senior running back, was named an All-Big Sky Conference first team selection this past month. He rushed for more than 1,000 yards and six touchdowns in 2013, also leading the Mustangs with 33 receptions for 200 yards and one touchdown.
Akins, a sophomore wide receiver, caught 8 passes in 10 games for Cal Poly this past season. He was pegged as a starter heading into the 2014 campaign.
Brito, Fort and Love have yet to see the field at Cal Poly. Brito, a redshirt freshman, is vying for NFL-prospect Cole Stanford’s old position at slotback. Defensive backs Fort and Love are both new to the program, having transferred from Wyoming and New Mexico State, respectively.