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Question of the Day
TALLAHASSEE, FLA. (AP) - A woman who accused Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston of sexual assault told police she was raped at an apartment after a night of drinking at a bar, according to a search warrant released hours before a prosecutor was to announce whether the Heisman Trophy contender should face charges.
In the warrant, the alleged victim told police she and friends had five to six shots at Potbellys and her “memory is very broken from that point forward.” She said she remembered being in a cab with a “non-descript” black man and going into an apartment where she was raped.
The alleged assault took place about a year ago. The woman didn’t identify Winston, who is black, until about a month later.
The warrant said she tried to fight the man off, and at some point, another man came into the room and told him to stop. But the two went into a bathroom “where he completed the act.”
Her next memory was of the suspect dressing her, putting her on a scooter and dropping her off at a campus intersection. She said she had no idea where the alleged assault took place.
State Attorney Willie Meggs said Wednesday his office had “exhausted all investigative tools” since the case was handed over to his office in mid-November.
“We have learned as much as we can learn,” said Meggs, who will announce his findings at a 2 p.m. news conference at the Leon County Courthouse.
The details of the alleged rape were contained in a search warrant for cell phone records, including text messages. It was dated Jan. 16, six days after the woman identified Winston. The warrant said the woman sent multiple text messages after the alleged assault, but it did not say what they said.
ESPN reported that DNA found in the accuser’s underwear matched Winston. But Winston’s attorney, Timothy Jansen, has suggested Winston had consensual sex with the accuser and he expects the prosecutor will exonerate his client.
“If he looked at evidence we did, we feel confident he will find that Mr. Winston did nothing wrong,” Jansen said.
Jansen is confident enough that he plans to briefly address the media at 3:30 p.m. Jansen said he still had not heard anything from prosecutors, which suggested it was unlikely any charges will be filed.
Patricia Carroll, the attorney representing the alleged victim, has not responded to requests for comment. Her office is expected to release a brief statement after the prosecutor’s announcement.
Winston, 19, has led the Seminoles to a No. 1 ranking and a shot at a national championship if they defeat Duke on Saturday.
Many voters are waiting to see whether Winston will be charged with a crime before casting their ballots. The deadline for ballots is Monday, and the trophy is awarded Dec. 14.
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