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Temple freshman Martin-Oguike Charged with On-campus rape

A freshman Temple University football player has been charged with raping another student in his dorm room, and even sending her a text message later asking: “Are you going to press charges?”

Praise Martin-Oguike, 18, was charged May 31 with forcible rape, false imprisonment and related offenses. He was released the same day after posting 10 percent of $15,000 bail. His name has been pulled from the online team roster. Ray Betzner, a Temple spokesman, said that Martin-Oguike has been suspended both as a student and from the football team “until the charges have been resolved.”

According to court records, the 21-year-old victim, originally from Maryland, told police that Martin-Oguike, whom she knew, approached her the afternoon of May 26 as her mother helped her move into a new apartment, and invited her to visit him later in his dorm. She agreed and stopped by his dorm at Park Avenue and Norris Street about 4 p.m., records show. He signed her in, and the pair went to his room to watch television, according to the affidavit. After some time, he forced her into a lying position, grabbed her around her neck, stripped her shorts off and then raped her while she kicked her legs, cried and told him to stop, the affidavit states.

He did stop then, and she grabbed her clothes and fled to the dorm bathroom, where she discovered vaginal bleeding and called a close friend in Michigan to tell her she’d just been raped, according to the affidavit.

While the friend later told police she’d urged the woman to go to the hospital, the woman instead took public transit back to her own apartment, where she showered and vomited repeatedly, according to the affidavit. She reported the incident the next day to Temple University Police, who referred it to the Philadelphia Police Department’s Special Victims Unit.

The student told police that Martin-Oguike texted her several times after the alleged incident, apologizing but denying wrongdoing and asking: “Are you going to press charges?”

Detectives acting on a search warrant later found evidence, unspecified in court paperwork, from Martin-Oguike’s dorm room, according to court records.

A judge issued a stay-away order. James Funt, Martin-Oguike’s attorney, couldn’t be reached for comment this morning.

Martin-Oguike, 6’1” and 225 pounds, originally from the Sewaren section of Woodbridge, Middlesex County, N.J., played freshman football in 2011 as a linebacker, according to the Temple University football team’s roster. Martin-Oguike (pronounced oh-GWE-kay) played seven games in 2011, and was one of five freshmen to see varsity action. He made his collegiate debut against Penn State, and also played on the kickoff return and punt return units. He had two tackles in a shutout against Ball State. In high school, he played linebacker and tight end at Woodbridge High School.

Martin-Oguike‘s profile on the social networking website LinkedIn says he attends the Fox School of Business at Temple.


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