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John Hugley suspended by Pitt over felony charges

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The former blue-chip recruit was charged with multiple felony offenses and has been suspended indefinitely by Pitt

Pittsburgh v Miami Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images

Pitt power forward John Hugley, a freshman out of Cleveland who joined the team as part of its 2020 recruiting class, has been suspended indefinitely for disciplinary reasons, according to an announcement from the school.

The reasons for the 6’9”, 240-pound power forward’s suspension were not revealed by Pitt. However, court documents show that Hugley was charged on Thursday with two felony counts of criminal conspiracy and one felony count of receiving stolen property.

A criminal complaint obtained by Craig Meyer of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette alleges that an unnamed friend of Hugley’s stole a 2012 Chevrolet Malibu on July 19, 2020, and Hugley joined his friend in the vehicle.

Claire Green, the daughter of the car’s owner, had parked the car on Coltart Avenue in Oakland on July 18. Green then exited the car with an unnamed friend and two of Hugley’s teammates, Noah Collier and William Jeffress. Green and her friend then went to a party with several Pitt players in attendance, including Hugley. And while she was at the party, she left her purse and keys in a common area.

Video showed Hugley’s friend entering the car and driving away at 12:34 a.m. on July 19. Then, at 1:14 a.m., a man identified as Hugley entered the car with the unnamed friend, and they drove away. Green told police that the car was taken without her permission, and a stolen vehicle report was filed on July 19.

Green’s Malibu was found on Aug. 4 with a stolen license plate. The license plate had been stolen from Chesterfield Avenue in Oakland. On Nov. 25, Green and her friend were shown footage of the incident and a still image by Pittsburgh police to try to determine the identity of the perpetrator. Green and her friend both identified Hugley in the still image, which was from Aug. 2. Green later identified Hugley was one of the people in a video from Aug. 1.

Hugley is a former four-star recruit out of Brush High School in the Cleveland area, and seven games into his Pitt career, he was averaging 5.1 points and 4.3 rebounds per game with the Panthers. Prior to Friday's announcement, he was expected to rejoin the team after missing its last game due to COVID-19 protocols.

Given the serious nature of Hugley's situation, his future at Pitt and with the team is in question at this point. Hugley has a preliminary hearing scheduled for Feb. 18.