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NDSU football players charged with petition fraud

Eleven people have been charged with filing false statements and petition fraud – and eight of them are NDSU football players.

Head Coach Craig Bohl says he has been aware of an ongoing investigation into this incident for several weeks but did not hear of charges until today.  The charges allege that the players and others helped to circulate petitions on two initiated measures for this November’s ballot – and that thousands of names collected for those petitions were either fabricated or unable to be verified.  Bohl says the players have been cooperative with the investigation into the case, and says none will suffer any disciplinary action until a later date.

"At this time they are going to be allowed to go through the legal process, and if there's any decision concerning team discipline it will be after they've had an opportunity to have their day in court," Bohl says.

Players involved have been identified as Aireal Boyd, Josh Colville, Demetrius Grey, Samuel Ojuri, Brendin Pierre, Antonio Rodgers, Bryan Shepherd and Marcus Williams.  Four of the players are starters.  The players obtained summer employment working on circulating petitions for initiated measures about the use of medical marijuana and for establishing a Clean Water, Lands and Outdoor Heritage Fund.  Both petitions have been thrown out due to the failure to obtain enough valid signatures.

Others charged in the case include Josh Gatlin, Jennifer Krahn, and Lane O'Brien.