MSU trustee charged with misdemeanor assault and battery

Jan 12, 2018

MSU trustee Mitch Lyons is facing a misdemeanor assault and battery charge in Jackson County.
Credit Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

A Michigan State University trustee and former NFL player is facing misdemeanor charges for assault and battery.

Trustee Mitch Lyons appeared today for arraignment in Jackson County District Court, according to the Lansing State Journal.

Court records list the alleged assault as occurring in mid-December. Details of the charge were not released, but Lyons' attorney, Brian Lennon, said in a statement Friday that "the overall situation was a misunderstanding."

Lyons played football from 1988 to 1992 at Michigan State. He spent seven years in the NFL with the Pittsburgh Steelers and Atlanta Falcons.

The Republican from Rockford has been serving on MSU's board of trustees since 2011.

He faced criticism last June over a radio interview in which he outed a whistleblower in a sexual assault case involving MSU football players.

A spokesman for MSU says the university is aware of the reported charges against Lyons and directed further questions to the trustee's spokesperson, who did not respond to requests for comment. 

Lyons will return to court for a hearing on January 29.