The Times West Virginian

May 30, 2013

Holton’s WVU status uncertain

After pleading no contest to felony charge of video voyeurism

By Bob Hertzel
Times West Virginian

MORGANTOWN — The status of Jonathan Holton’s scholarship at West Virginia University remains uncertain today after he pleaded no contest Wednesday to a felony charge of video voyeurism and was sentenced to two years of probation in Superior Court in South Kingstown, R.I.

A second count of video voyeurism was dismissed during the court appearance.

Earlier a charge of possession of stolen property involving a laptop computer was dropped.

Holton is a former University of Rhode Island player who was arrested last March and charged with videotaping separate consensual sexual encounters with different women without their knowledge and posting them to Facebook.

He had been a solid player as a freshman for Rhode Island averaging 10.2 points and grabbing 8.1 rebounds a game. The 6-8 forward was an all-rookie selection in the Atlantic 10.

Following his arrest he was dismissed from school and enrolled at Palm Beach (Fla.) State, where he went about rehabilitating his image.

He averaged 17.5 points and 14.1 rebounds, drawing praise for behavior and attitude from his coach and attracting a number of schools to recruit him.

He was exactly what WVU coach Bob Huggins was seeking after suffering through a rare losing season in WVU’s first year in the Big 12.

“Jonathan is a prototype Big 12 forward,” Huggins said in a statement when the school signed Holton. “He can really score it off the bounce, play with his back to the basket, stretch defenses to make 3-pointers, as well as being a terrific offensive rebounder. He should give us immediate help on the front line.”

Huggins acknowledged there was a situation created by the pending legal issue and there was an indication that a decision on whether the scholarship would be honored would not be made until after the legal issues were resolved.

On Wednesday they were resolved, and while he was not cleared, he was not found guilty, either, which makes you suspect in the end the Mountaineers will take him on.

Huggins long has had a reputation for giving troubled players second chances, many of which have worked out well.

There was no word late Wednesday what WVU would do.

“We don’t have any comment at this time,” said basketball SID Bryan Messerly in an email.

Email Bob Hertzel at bhertzel@hotmail.com or follow him on Twitter @bhertzel.