The King County Prosecutor's Office announced Friday that it will not file felony charges against a University of Washington men's basketball player who had been the subject of a rape investigation.
A 16-year-old girl claimed the player forced her to perform a sex act at a Seattle apartment on Jan. 8. However, county prosecutor Dan Satterberg’s office said in a news release that witnesses portrayed the encounter as consensual.
Here is that release:
“After completing a thorough investigation into an allegation that a University of Washington Husky basketball player sexually assaulted a 16-year-old girl, the Seattle Police Department referred the matter to the King County Prosecutor’s Office after concluding that there was insufficient evidence to support criminal charges. The King County Prosecutor’s Office has conducted its own review and has reached the same conclusion.
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“The Prosecutor’s Office does not typically name the parties involved in a case that is declined for filing.
“The decision to decline to file felony charges is based on the review of witness statements taken by Seattle Police, including statements from a 16-year-old friend of the complaining witness, and two other men who were present in the basketball player’s apartment. Witnesses describe how the young women contacted the basketball player through Facebook, then later in person. The basketball player met the young women downtown, and then allegedly purchased liquor for them on the way to his apartment. After the young women consumed the liquor, witnesses describe consensual sexual contact.
“The young woman involved is 16 years old and, under Washington State law, is legally capable of consenting to have sexual contact. A charge of Rape in the Third Degree requires proof that a victim clearly expresses a lack of consent by words or conduct. Evidence does not exist in this case to support a charge of Rape in the Third Degree. Therefore, no criminal charges will be filed.
“The case has been referred to the Seattle City Attorney’s Office for consideration of the filing of misdemeanor charges of furnishing alcohol to a minor.”
The university released a statement acknowledging that it had heard from the prosecutor’s office, and referred questions to the legal authorities because the investigation is ongoing.
The issue of team disciplinary action was not mentioned.
The News Tribune has not named the player because he has not been arrested or charged with a crime.