MOORHEAD – A Minnesota State University Moorhead wrestler is accused of getting another student drunk in his dorm room Labor Day evening, and raping her while videotaping it and after inviting other students on his floor to come watch.
Angel Mario Vega, 23, of Moorhead was charged Wednesday in Clay County District Court with one count of felony third-degree criminal sexual conduct with a helpless victim, and with one count of providing alcohol to someone under 21, a misdemeanor.
“He has been suspended from the wrestling team pending the outcome of the legal process and university investigation,” athletic director Doug Peters said Friday.
In 2013, Vega qualified for the NCAA Division II national tournament at 141 pounds, finishing that season with a 25-15 record.
Court documents state Moorhead police and an ambulance were dispatched about 11:15 p.m. Monday to Grantham Hall on the MSUM campus on a report of intoxicated people.
When officers arrived at Vega’s dorm room, there was a strong odor of alcohol and vomit. They saw two men and two women in the room.
One of the women was lying in bed vomiting into a trashcan. The other woman was lying on the floor unconscious and partially undressed, having vomited on herself.
When Vega saw the police, he bent down, grabbed the woman on the floor and told her to be quiet.
As that woman was being transported to the hospital, Vega’s roommate reportedly told police he and Vega had invited the two women over for drinks, and they became intoxicated after playing some drinking games and losing to the men.
Four other students on the floor told police that Vega came over and asked them to “see something crazy.” In the lounge area, they saw the victim was lying topless on the couch, clearly intoxicated, they told police.
The students told police Vega said he was going to take her back to his room and “get laid,” and saw him dragging her back to his room. Concerned, they called floor security.
Police found several items of women’s clothing in Vega’s room, along with the victim’s student identification card.
A search warrant executed on Vega’s dorm room also turned up his cellphone, on which a detective found a photo of the half-unclothed woman on the lounge couch, court documents state. The video shows Vega forcing the woman to have sex, according to court documents.
In an interview with a Moorhead detective, Vega allegedly admitted he gave the victim Fireball whiskey, despite knowing she was only 18.
Vega denied having sex with the woman and said he only made out with her. He also denied telling other students he was going “to get laid.”
He could not explain how the woman’s underwear ended up on his dorm room floor, court documents say. Vega denied to police he took video or photos of the victim.
Seven hours later at the hospital, the victim was able to speak to a detective, court documents state.
She recalled nothing of the events beyond the drinking games, and a vague recollection of being in the ambulance.
She was not in a relationship with Vega, and never had alcohol with him before Monday night, she told a detective. Her blood alcohol content was 0.235 percent when she arrived at the hospital.
Vega’s defense attorney, Ken Kohler of Vogel Law Firm, said he had not seen the police reports and could not comment until he had.
Vega’s bail was set at $60,000. His next court appearance is set for Sept. 12.
Vega, from Olivehurst, Calif., redshirted for the Dragons last season, posting an 11-5 record competing unattached.
Forum reporter Eric Peterson contributed to this report.