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Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Cubs to take Luke Heimlich off draft board in response to sex offender news

Luke Heimlich

A disturbing crime committed by Oregon State pitcher Luke Heimlich when he was a teenager has come to light, and that is resulting in some serious fallout for the draft prospect.

Chicago Cubs GM Jed Hoyer said on Thursday that he thinks his team will remove Heimlich from their draft board in response to the news.

Heimlich, a southpaw pitcher for No. 1 Oregon State, has the lowest ERA in the country at 0.76. He has been the ace of the staff for the top-ranked Beavers, who are set to host Vanderbilt in the super regionals of the NCAA Tournament. But his reputation — and draft status — took a major hit when The Oregonian reported Thursday about Heimlich’s past as a sex offender.

The Oregonian reports that:

As a teenager, Heimlich pleaded guilty to a single charge of sexually molesting a 6-year-old female family member. Heimlich registered as a sex offender in Benton County after arriving at Oregon State. When he was cited in April for missing an annual update, it put the case in Oregon court records for the first time.

They say the case came to light when a sergeant did a sweep in search of offenders who let their registration lapse, which Heimlich did.

Heimlich, who was a Gatorade State Player of the Year in Washington in high school, was classified as a low-risk offender in the state. It’s unclear if the school knew that Heimlich was a registered sex offender, but they do receive lists of students who are registered as such.

Heimlich’s case first was investigated in 2012. He was found to have molested a family member first when she was four years old and then again when she was six years old.

According to The Oregonian:

The girl told investigators that inside Heimlich’s bedroom, he pulled down her underwear and “touched her on both the inside and outside of the spot she uses to go to the bathroom,” according to court records.

“She said that she told him to stop, but he wouldn’t,” the documents state, and that “it hurt” when he touched her.

Heimlich pleaded guilty to one charge of felony molestation in 2011 and the other charge was dropped. Heimlich entered a diversion program, received two years of probation and was ordered to attend sex offender treatment for two years.

Heimlich was cited recently for failing to keep up his sex offender registration in Oregon. The Oregonian notes that young sex offenders are generally unlikely to offend in the future after completing treatment, as Heimlich has done.

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