Utah State football player arrested and charged after allegedly raping female student in campus dorm

Booking photo for Ismael "Izzy" Kalani Vaifo'ou (Courtesy: Cache County Jail)

LOGAN — A 22-year-old Utah State football player is in jail after allegedly entering several on-campus dorm rooms and raping a female student early Sunday morning. Ismael “Izzy” Kalani Vaifo’ou was booked into the Cache County Jail where he is being held temporarily without bail.

Monday afternoon, Vaifo’ou was arraigned during a virtual hearing in 1st District Court, appearing by web conference from jail. He was charged with rape, a first-degree felony; three counts of forcible sex abuse and one count of burglary, second-degree felonies; and three misdemeanors.

According to an arrest report, USU police officers were called to the Living Learning Center dorms on report that Vaifo’ou had entered several rooms on several different floors. He is a resident in the dormitory and was reportedly intoxicated.

One woman told officers she was woken up by the sounds of doors opening and closing. Vaifo’ou then allegedly entered her room and started walking toward her bed, before she told him to leave.

The report stated a second woman also claimed she woke up and found Vaifo’ou “laying in her bed next to her in only his underwear.” He reportedly was molesting her until she pushed him and told him to get out.

Other residents told police they witnessed Vaifo’ou entering two other rooms temporarily. They also claimed they could detect an odor of alcohol coming from the suspect.

Police questioned Vaifo’ou and advised him of his rights. He admitted to entering the women’s apartment, stating he had taken off his clothes and got into bed with one of the alleged victims. He also confessed to touching the woman inappropriately over her clothing.

During Monday’s arraignment, Cache County Deputy Attorney Clark Harms explained how prosecutors filed a motion to detain Vaifo’ou in jail without bail. He said the charges speak that the suspect is a danger to the community.

Defense attorney Cara Tangaro asked the court for a hearing where she could argue against prosecutor’s motion.

Judge Angela Fonnesbeck ordered Vaifo’ou to remain in jail and appear for a detention hearing April 26.

Vaifo’ou is from Salt Lake and a sophomore defensive-end for the Aggies. He played in four games last season and finished with seven tackles. He also reportedly took part in the team’s Blue and White scrimmage Saturday afternoon.

USU spokeswoman Amanda DeRito said Vaifo’ou has been suspended from the football team and all team activities. He was also trespassed from the school, prohibiting him from being allowed on campus without campus police escorts. DeRito said the university is focusing its efforts on providing help to the alleged victims.

Individuals arrested and charged in complaints are presumed innocent unless or until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in court.


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