By Tim Eberly
The results of a university system audit of the men's basketball program at Montana State University-Northern has been referred to the Attorney General's Office for a criminal investigation, state auditors said today.
Results of the audit were forwarded to the Legislative Audit Division in Helena on Tuesday, four days after coach Brian Harrell resigned, according to Jim Gillett, deputy auditor with the Legislative Audit Division.
The legislative auditors concurred with the results of the audit by MSU-Bozeman officials and referred the case to the Attorney General's Office the same day, Gillett said.
"They concluded there was suspected theft," Gillett said. "We thought the information we had supported the notion that there was a case."
Said Wayne Guazzo, audit manager for the Legislative Audit Division, "We determined that there was an apparent penal violation."
Arlyn Greydanus, the criminal investigation chief in the Attorney General's Office, could not be reached for comment.
Gillett would not comment on specifics of the audit.
"It's a matter of ongoing criminal investigation and there's nothing we can say," he said.
Harrell and MSU-N Chancellor Alex Capdeville could not be reached for comment. Athletic director Ted Spatkowski declined comment today.
Capdeville has said Harrell's resignation was related to the audit but that the audit was not the main reason for it. School officials said the first-year coach was not asked to resign.
Auditors from MSU-Bozeman arrived on Havre's campus two days before Harrell resigned. Spatkowski has said the audit was requested because of concerns about financial irregularities in the men's basketball program.