Raven Saunders is the latest athlete banned on USADA's list of missing doping cases. She is banned from any athletics competition until 2024.
Raven Saunders has accepted an 18-month suspension from United S, for a whereabouts violation (missing three doping tests in a year), retroactive to August 15, 2022.
In a release by the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA), the Tokyo Olympics silver medallist in the women's shot put within 12 months, accrued three Whereabouts Failures: the first on January 8, 2022, the second on May 26, 2022, and the third on August 15, 2022.
All her performances since August 15, 2022, have been disqualified.
Here's the full press release on the USADA website
"At the time of the Whereabouts Failures, Saunders, 26, was a member of the USADA Registered Testing Pool (RTP), which consists of a select group of elite athletes subject to certain Whereabouts requirements to be located for out-of-competition testing.
"Within a 12-month period, Saunders accrued three Whereabouts Failures: the first on January 8, 2022, the second on May 26, 2022, and the third on August 15, 2022.
"The accumulation of three Whereabouts Failures within a 12-month period constitutes a rule violation under the USADA Protocol for Olympic and Paralympic Movement Testing, the United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee National Anti-Doping Policy, and the World Athletics Anti-Doping Rules, all of which have adopted the World Anti-Doping Code.
"Saunders’s 18-month period of ineligibility began on August 15, 2022, the date of her third Whereabouts Failure. In addition, Saunders has been disqualified from all competitive results achieved on and subsequent to August 15, 2022, including forfeiture of any medals, points, and prizes.
"Accurate Whereabouts information is crucial to locate athletes for effective out-of-competition testing, which helps deter and detect doping by enabling no-advance notice sample collection.
"This is especially important because some prohibited substances have limited detection windows and the most effective test timing must remain unpredictable. All athletes within USADA’s RTP and Clean Athlete Pool are required to provide accurate and up-to-date whereabouts in accordance with the anti-doping rules," a part of their statement read on the website.