A former head basketball coach of a New York community college has been indicted on charges he used forged transcripts to help star players transfer to NCAA Division I colleges, prosecutors said Thursday.
Tyrone Mushatt, who was arraigned on an 18-count indictment, "abdicated his responsibility as a college coach and brazenly and methodically subverted the integrity of the college athletic system," said state Inspector General Catherine Leahy Scott.
Several former basketball stars at Westchester Community College were ruled ineligible at other schools as a result of the scandal, which was uncovered in October 2014 by The Journal News. It prompted the college to cancel the past two men's seasons and the most recent women's season.
Mushatt, a Bronx resident, altered the grades on some of his players' transcripts between 2012 and 2014, according to prosecutors. They said the bogus transcripts were sent to seven colleges, including St. John's, Quinnipiac and Florida A&M universities.
No one else has been charged in the scandal. However, an internal probe - conducted by Mushatt - led to the firing of an assistant coach.
"His lies caused his subordinate to get fired," Assistant District Attorney Brian Conway said.
"If it's true, it's extremely selfish, horrible, and there is a price to be paid," said Westchester County Judge Barry Warhit.
Defense attorney John Pappalardo said Mushatt "maintained his innocence since day one" and "has a tremendous amount of support in the community."
Mushatt, who was released without bail, declined comment.