Washington's Arrest Causes More Columbia Residents to Speak Out

6 years 7 months 3 weeks ago August 31, 2010 Aug 31, 2010 Tuesday, August 31 2010 Tuesday, August 31, 2010 10:03:40 PM CDT in News

COLUMBIA - "Do you become less of a fan?" asked local radio talk show host Mike Ferguson.

"It'll make me more of a fan, because they have actually decided moral and standards are more important than winning ball games," responded the caller.

After the recent arrest, Ferguson decided to open the phone lines to allow his audience to call in and comment about the issue.

Washington's recent arrest causes more Columbia residents to speak out.  Washington is the third MU football player to be arrested in August.

Ferguson believes the community and the University are intertwined.

"Sports is not just entertainment or scores, but in a lot of ways is a reflection of the community. And so, the way we handle something turbulent like this speaks not just of the University, but of the entire community as well," said Ferguson.

Feguson says the main thing is that the University holds those who are accused accountable.

"If they do that, I don't think it's going to diminish the stature, diminish the respect of the University. I don't think it's going to tarnish the image at all," said Ferguson.

The community pays attention to the legal proceedings in high profile cases.

Lawyer Wally Bley is no stranger to high profile clients. He handled former Missouri Guard Rick Clemons case, and he says people deserve to know about high profile cases.

"There is only so much you can tell people on the one hand, but you don't want to just turn your back on reporters or the public, who have a right to be informed and kept abreast of what's happening, " said Bley.

Washington's arraignment is scheduled for September 23rd.

The Tigers begin their season this Saturday against Illinois.

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