In an anonymous letter mailed to the University’s president, the team was accused engaging in “a long list of things” including prostitution, providing alcohol to minors and paying others to do their homework.
The team was questioned by authorities following their practice on Wednesday and some members were taken to the station for questioning shortly after the women were informed of the allegations. An anonymous cheerleader told WMBF their cell phones were searched before they were released when police were unable to discover any wrongdoing.
However, the team is still suspended. Coastal Carolina Associate Vice President of University Communications Martha Hunn told The New York Daily News the suspension was indefinite pending a conduct investigation.
“At this time, the CCU Department of Public Safety is conducting the investigation. There are currently no incident reports pertaining to this investigation” Hunn said in an email.
This is a rather serious move, considering the squad is scheduled to take part in a national competition in April and had raised money for travel expenses. Now they won’t be able to go.
The cheerleaders responded to the allegations in a joint statement, calling them false and noting that they’ve led to on-campus harassment:
At this point in time, we no longer wish to be contacted about the current situation. The false accusations have led to harassment on campus as well as through social media, and are beginning to negatively impact our daily lives as well as our studies. As a team we ask the community to support us through these tough times as we hope the situation will be cleared up shortly.
The Coastal Carolina Cheerleading Team
It’s not the first time the team has made headlines for troubling conduct.
Earlier this year, one cheerleader Madison Marie Loader (who is no longer on the team) was arrested and charged with accessory after the fact to a felony, according to MyrtleBeachOnline.com.