Two former Oregon State University football players and one current team member are facing felony charges of unauthorized use of a vehicle - an OSU golf cart.
Lyle Moevao, 23, Brennan Olander, 22, and Keaton Kristick, 21, were arraigned Wednesday afternoon in Benton County Circuit Court, where they all entered pleas of not guilty. Corvallis attorney John Rich is representing all three men.
Moevao is a former starting quarterback for the Beavers; Kristick is a former linebacker. Olander, a senior, is a defensive tackle. The three are accused of stealing a golf cart belonging to the OSU athletic department.
The black and orange cart was reported stolen March 14. At 3:54 a.m. on March 18, Oregon State Police found the cart, damaged, in a parking spot for the handicapped in the 2800 block of Southwest Western Boulevard.
Witnesses said they saw a man driving the cart earlier, and he had flipped it over.
Troopers spoke with Moevao on the evening of March 18 and gave him a citation for unauthorized use of a vehicle. Troopers wanted to talk to Kristick and Olander about their possible involvement, but weren't immediately able to until April 1, when they decided not to cite them and forwarded the case to the Benton County District Attorney's Office. After reviewing the case, Benton County District Attorney John Haroldson decided there was a basis to charge all three.
Steve Fenk, the assistant athletic director for communications at OSU, said head football coach Mike Riley, who is out of town for team business, knows about the charges.
"We are aware of the situation and we are handling it internally for the time being," Fenk said. Although the men entered not guilty pleas at their arraignments Wednesday, all are scheduled to appear in court Tuesday morning for plea and sentencing hearings.
In January, Olander was ordered to complete a diversion program after he pleaded guilty to second-degree theft stemming from an incident in May 2009.
Fenk said it's not clear what kind of team discipline Olander could face for cumulative offenses.
Moevao and Kristick are both former standouts for the Beavers. Moevao transferred to OSU in 2006 from El Camino Community College in California. He was the starting quarterback in 2008 until he injured his shoulder in November, and appeared in just one game in 2009 due to injuries. He petitioned the NCAA for a sixth year of eligibility, but that request was denied March 4.
Kristick played on the varsity football team for four years and is finishing up his degree in business at OSU. He recently signed a free-agent contract with the San Francisco 49ers of the National Football League.