Griffon football player to be arraigned for DWI

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­Missouri Western football player Benjamin Pister will be arraigned Nov. 9  after being cited in Country Club Village on Sept. 19 for driving while intoxicated.  Pister, A defensive lineman, was also cited for failure to drive on the right side of the road and operating a motor vehicle without insurance.

Four days after the citation, Pister did not play during the loss to Washburn. He also sat out two games last year, one against Mesa State and the other against Washburn, one due to injury.

Last spring, Pister was arrested on Jan. 29 for third-degree assault and second-degree burglary charges.  The arrest was related to a fight that allegedly took place between the football and baseball teams. According to a Feb. 2 article on newspressnow.com, the complainants said that a group that included Western football players assaulted them. In May, a municipal judge ordered Pister to pay a $200 fine for assault.

Head Coach Jerry Partridge declined to comment on Pister’s DWI citation.

“Anything that happens with our kids is going to be handled in house, and I’m not going to comment on it in public,” he said.

Pister is a physical education major who is a redshirted junior. He played for St. Joseph Central High School where he was two time All-state. This season, Pister has 5.5 sacks, one interception and 26 tackles.

According to the Athletics Department Drug and Alcohol Policy, the first misdemeanor or felony conviction related to alcohol would result in the notification of the head coach, athlete and the athlete’s parents or guardian. That athlete is also required to seek counseling independent of the athletic department.  The student athlete would also be subject to disciplinary actions through Student Affairs.

Associate Athletic Director Patsy Smith said that on top of the department’s policy, head coaches have their own policy.

“Each of our sports have certain rules within their sport that could differ from sport to sport and how a coach deals with things,” Smith said.

Smith said that she and former Athletic Director Dave Williams were addressing some concerns with the drug and alcohol policy — specifically the repercussions of a second incident. According to the policy, student athletes who have a second incident not only have to seek further counseling, but are also suspended for 90 days.

“Because sports vary in how long their season is, perhaps you’d look at a percentage of games rather than a number of days,” she said.

According to the Athletics Department Drug and Alcohol Policy, Western athletes must undergo drug and alcohol abuse awareness training. The policy states, “Missouri Western State University will provide an education program to inform our student-participants of the inherent hazards of abusing these substances.  It is our goal to promote the physical and psychological well-being of the MWSU student-participant.”

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