A California jury has rejected a woman’s $21.5 million rape lawsuit against Knicks’ star Derrick Rose.
The jury deliberated for just under four hours Wednesday in Los Angeles federal court before finding the accuser hadn’t proven her claim that Rose and two friends gang-raped her while she was drunk or drugged in her central California apartment.
Rose showed no emotion as the verdict was read, and just shook his lawyer’s hand.
Outside of court, he said he was thankful the jury “understood and agreed with me.”
The accuser filed her blockbuster lawsuit last year, claiming the men drank tequila with her and possibly drugged her at a Beverly Hills rental home on Aug. 26, 2013, and then let themselves into her apartment a few hours later to gang rape her while she was drifting in and out of consciousness, unable to consent.
Rose and his co-defendants Randall Hampton and Ryan Allen – who all met playing youth basketball in South Side, Chicago – vehemently denied the woman’s claims.
Each testified during the two-week trial, saying they all had consensual sex with the accuser at the luxury rental house and then accepted an invitation to have more sex with her in the predawn hours of Aug. 27, 2013.
In his closing argument Tuesday, Rose’s lawyer Mark Baute said the woman welcomed the men into her bed with “open arms and open legs.”
With no physical evidence in the case, the jury was left to make its decision based on often-lurid testimony and a series of text messages produced by the woman.
At the heart of the trial was the issue of consent – whether the accuser was too incapacitated to consent to sexual activity.
When Rose testified – on three separate days altogether – he was calm, called himself a “loner” and said he believed he had consent from the woman based on her words, actions and their nearly two year dating history.
He said the woman sent him sexually suggestive text messages the morning of Aug. 26, 2013, engaged in sexual activity with him at the Beverly Hills house, invited him back to her apartment in text messages and then soberly led him and his two friends into her apartment and explicitly told them to take turns.
“If someone tells you come in one at a time, and you’re a guy, what is that?” Rose testified.
He testified that his accuser “grabbed” him when he entered her bedroom and initiated the sex that ended with him stowing his used condom in his pocket.
“If I’m in a room with her and she says no, no, I’m never going to force myself (on her),” he testified.
Of the condom, he said, “In my profession, they teach us right when we enter the NBA, if you can’t flush it, take your condom with you.”
He pointed to the texts from the morning before, when Doe texted him out of the blue, saying he was her “inspiration” and that he’s the reason she wakes up “horny.”
“When she sent texts like that, 99% of the time, it ended with sex. So what do you expect?” he said.
The woman, meanwhile, testified that she got so wasted at Rose’s rental house, she started to play with decorative “gemstones” in his outdoor fire pit and burned her hands.
Derrick Rose #25 of the New York Knicks takes the basketball up the court during their game against the Houston Rockets at the Toyota Center on October 4, 2016 in Houston, Texas.
(Scott Halleran/Getty Images)
She was grilled over text messages she sent to Rose before arriving at his house, especially one in which she claimed to be buying a sex belt at a “girls on girls” store.
She said she fabricated the story because she previously received the belt as swag at an event and wanted Rose to think it was new.
“I didn’t want him to think I was regifting,” she testified.
In his closing arguments Tuesday, her lawyer Waukeen McCoy called the sex belt a “red herring” used by the defense for “slut shaming.”
In more than eight hours of her own tearful testimony, the woman said she blacked out at the Beverly Hills house and only remembered vomiting in her bathroom before passing out with her room “spinning.” She claimed she woke up to “flashes” of the defendants having sex with her without her consent.
“I don’t consider sex happening to a person that’s blacked out. I don’t consider that sex,” she said, crying.
Rose’s lawyer said during his closing argument Tuesday that the woman was a liar looking for a “wealth transfer” from Rose.
“This woman packaged a fake rape case,” he said.
“I submit to you all, this is young 20-somethings doing what young 20-somethings are doing all over the country,” Baute said of the sexual activity that night and early morning.
“The only reason we’re here is because Derrick Rose has money and she wants some of it,” he said.
Source: NY Daily News Headlines Sports News