On Wednesday a jury found that NBA star Derrick Rose and his two friends did not sexually assault the woman who accused them of doing so.
The Los Angeles federal court jury deliberated for just under four hours before finding the accuser hadn’t proven her claim that Rose, 28, and two friends gang raped her while she was drunk or drugged in her central California apartment in 2013.
Rose showed no emotion as the verdict was read, and just shook his lawyer’s hand.
Judge Michael Fitzgerald wished the accuser well, and then turned to the hoops star. “Mr. Rose, my best wishes to you and your career — except when the Knicks play the Lakers,” he quipped.
Rose waited for the jurors by a courthouse elevator afterwards, and thanked them each individually later even posing for pictures with some.
One of the jurors, who only gave her name as Jennifer, insisted there was nothing nefarious about the selfie — she just wanted a memento from what was “a fascinating experience.”
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, acknowledged that they had sex with the woman, but stated that it was consensual. Rose, who missed a large mass of the NBA preseason to attend the trial, declined the comment later, except to say, “I’m focused on the season.” In a prepared statement, he said, “I am thankful that the jury understood and agreed with me … I am ready to put this behind me and focus on my family and career.”
“We’re very happy the system worked,” said his lawyer, Mark Baute. “All three men were innocent from day one.”
The lawyer for the accuser said she was “devastated” by the verdict, and they’re weighing an appeal.
“It’s a shame for this country that a celebrity can come to court and slut-shame a plaintiff,” said the lawyer, Waukeen McCoy.
In his closing argument Tuesday, Baute said the woman welcomed the men into her bed with “open arms and open legs.”
Jurors were more diplomatic — they just said the accuser wasn’t able to prove her case.
“I don’t want to call her a liar. I don’t want to call her anything. I just didn’t feel like there was enough evidence,” said the jury forewoman, who gave her name as Janet. “There just wasn’t enough.”
A male juror said, “It felt like she was playing us,” he said.
“At the beginning I was on her side 100%, and as it went on, there were clear problems with the 30-year-old woman’s case — she filed suit two years after the incident, before ever going to police, and didn’t have any physical evidence.”
How do you feel about the results of this case? Do you feel justice were served for the young woman or Do you feel Rose got off because he was a NBA star?
Share your thoughts below on this case outcome.