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ECU football staffer suspended after arrest

From staff and electronic reports
All rights reserved.

Donnie Thompson, the most experienced assistant on the East Carolina football staff, has been suspended from his job after being charged with one count of obtaining property by false pretenses, the school announced Tuesday afternoon.

Donnie Thompson

Thompson has served as assistant head coach and defensive line coach since joining the initial ECU staff of head coach Skip Holtz in 2004. Thompson has also been one of the program's most effective recruiters during that span.

Thompson was arrested by campus police Tuesday and was released under an unsecured $10,000 bond, according to an ECU press release.

A warrant filed by ECU police said that Thompson created and submitted fictitious receipts to be reimbursed for money that he claimed he spent while recruiting student athletes. Thompson had not spent the money and was not entitled to reimbursement, the warrant said. The total amount of money involved was $11,373.70, police said.

Thompson's employment with ECU has been suspended with full pay in accordance with university policies and procedures, according to school officials.

ECU Athletics Director Terry Holland said the university will immediately begin a search to find a replacement for Thompson as defensive line coach.

Thompson was in his second stint with the Pirates, having served as defensive coordinator on the staff of then-head coach Art Baker in 1988-89. Thompson left ECU after the 1989 season for UNC-Chapel Hill, where he spent 12 years as defensive line coach.

Holtz brought Thompson back to East Carolina from Illinois, where he was defensive line coach for four years.

Altogether, Thompson has 32 years of college coaching experience. A native of Bogalusa, LA, he began his coaching career as a linebackers and ends coach at Connecticut, his alma mater, from 1975 to 1981.

Citing the police investigation and state personnel laws, ECU officials indicated they would have no further comment on matters relating to Thompson's arrest and suspension.

05/09/2007 03:19:06 AM


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