Husker RB Maurice Washington self-surrenders in California, court date set for April

Husker RB Maurice Washington self-surrenders in California, court date set for April
Scott Frost has said Maurice Washington would be a "limited participant" this spring, but he was not seen at the portion of Monday's practice open to media. BRENDAN SULLIVAN/THE WORLD-HERALD

LINCOLN — Husker running back Maurice Washington returned to California over the weekend to self-surrender to authorities, a spokesman for the Santa Clara Sheriff’s Office said Monday.

Washington was not at Monday’s Husker football practice, and coach Scott Frost said Washington was in California to get “processed.” Frost said he expects Washington to return to Lincoln on Monday night.

“Working through his lawyer, I know he wanted to get out there and surrender and satisfy the warrant as quickly as he could,” Frost said. “They had it worked out for today, so Maurice flew out to California (Sunday) night.”

Washington was booked into the Santa Clara County jail Monday morning and was given an April 10 court date. His bail then was set at $35,000. He posted bail and is not in Santa Clara County custody.

“Mr. Washington has been fully cooperative with authorities, and had the arrest warrant removed this morning in California,” Washington’s attorney, John Ball, said in a statement. “As we move through this process, Mr. Washington will continue to focus on all of his responsibilities and commitments. Due process in our legal system often takes time and patience, and we must respect that process.”

Frost said last week Washington would be a “limited participant” this spring because of the legal situation. Frost said he’s talked to Washington “several times about how he’s going to behave from here forward and what role he’s going to have in practice.” But Frost has purposely kept “everything that has to do with California at arm’s length.”

Washington faces a felony and a misdemeanor charge that stem from his alleged sharing in 2018 of a video of a 15-year-old performing oral sex.

The felony charge is possession of a video of a person under 18 engaging in or simulating sexual conduct. The misdemeanor charge is sharing a recording without the person’s consent.

Washington is accused of texting the 10-second video of the sex act to the girl who was in the video in March 2018. Washington was not in the video and did not record the video, which was recorded in 2016.

Washington and the girl had dated in ninth grade, but last year had started communicating through Instagram.

She wanted to congratulate for signing to play football at Nebraska. Washington then began making romantic advances, and the girl said she just wanted to be friends, according to a Santa Clara County sheriff’s investigator report.

Washington then allegedly texted the video to the girl and wrote, “Remember this hoe.”

The Nebraska athletic department has said no athletic officials, including Frost, were aware of the specifics of the investigation when authorities called to speak with Washington this fall. They introduced Washington to former Nebraska Attorney General Jon Bruning to represent Washington, who did so until Ball took over in February. Bruning is a longtime friend of Frost and Matt Davison, an associate athletic director.

Frost last week said any player who represents Nebraska in a poor light may have to face consequences.

“Anytime anybody on our team behaves in a way that isn’t consistent with the values of our team or our university, they run the risk of losing playing time or putting their status on the team in jeopardy,” Frost said. “But to me, it’s important to have clear understanding of the situation before that decision is made.”

Frost said he will make a decision about Washington’s status in conjunction with university administrators.

In Washington’s absence, Nebraska’s top four running backs Monday were senior Wyatt Mazour, sophomore Jaylin Bradley, redshirt freshman Brody Belt and redshirt freshman Miles Jones. Jones is also a slot receiver. Another hybrid back/receiver, true freshman Wan’Dale Robinson, was held out of practice.