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Six Castleton students suspended from Spartan football team

Six Castleton State College students have been indefinitely suspended from the institution’s football program following accusations of their involvement in a theft conspiracy. (File photo)

Six Castleton State College students have been indefinitely suspended from the institution’s football program following accusations of their involvement in a theft conspiracy. (File photo)

— Six Castleton State College students have been indefinitely suspended from the institution’s football program following accusations of their involvement in a theft conspiracy.

On Sept. 10, Vermont State Police Trooper Jason Johnson responded to a call from Dick’s Sporting Goods in Rutland Town regarding a possible theft. Johnson found George Andrew Busharis leaving Dick’s with two shopping bags. According to police, Busharis provided a receipt that showed one purchase of $3.20, but the merchandise he was in possession of totaled over $300.

Busharis, a Mansfield, Mass. resident, admitted to the theft, revealing he was helped by then employee Brandon Boyle, another member of the college’s athletic team. The two men had coordinated stealing merchandise on several occasions in recent weeks, according to police. While the exact total remains unclear, Dick’s administration estimates the total loss from the incidents to be over $3,000.

The store’s loss prevention staff told police they had video footage and receipts showing Boyle assisting other individuals in thefts, said police.

CSC spokesman Jeff Weld announced Wednesday that the two players were suspended from the team and will be subject to the college’s judicial process. It was later announced that Boyle, a Springfield, Vt resident, assisted four other members of the football team, whose names have not yet been released by the college. Those four players were also suspended indefinitely until the investigation is complete.

Castleton State College President Dave Wolk met with the entire D-III team Wednesday, including Head Coach Marc Klatt, to discuss the severity of their teammate’s actions.

"We discussed life lessons, and reassured them of our support for them as individuals and as a team," he said. "We will stay positive and upbeat as we move forward together as a family.”

Both Busharis, a quarterback, and Boyle, an All-American wide receiver, share the distinction of being nationally ranked this season.

Wolk emphasized that the students alleged actions are “in no way typical of Castleton student behavior.”

Both students received criminal citations and were released. They are scheduled to appear in court Oct. 14 and 18. E-mails to Boyle and Busharis remained unanswered as of press time.

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