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FSU’s Jameis Winston Will Not Be Charged In Sexual Assault Case

Photo by SI.com

Photo by SI.com

Jameis Winston, the freshman quarterback and Heisman Trophy candidate for No. 1 ranked Florida State, was cleared of prosecution for rape by the state attorney for the Second Judicial Circuit Thursday afternoon.

Winston had faced felony charges after being accused of sexually assaulting a woman at an off-campus apartment on Dec. 7, 2012.

“We’ve carefully examined all the evidence in this case and have concluded that no charges will be brought against anyone in this case,” Florida state attorney Willie Meggs, said.

The state’s attorney office interviewed the woman the first week into their investigation over the last three weeks. DNA found in the woman’s underwear matched Winston’s, ESPN.com reported last month. Winston admitted through an attorney that he had consensual sex with the accuser. But the woman, who is 19, said through her lawyer that Winston raped her.

“We have a duty as prosecutors to determine if each case has a reasonable likelihood of conviction,” Meggs said. “After reviewing the facts in this case, we do not feel that we can reach those burdens.”

The case could be reopened if new evidence emerged, but Meggs indicated it was unlikely, saying, he “had no earthly idea what (new evidence) would be.”

With Winston emerging as a college football star, the natural question was raised about the potential for preferential treatment afforded Winston.

“We try to treat everyone fairly and I think we have a track record of doing that,” Meggs said.

At the heart of the investigation was the fact that another man’s DNA was also found in the sexual assault kit. In search warrants released, the woman said she and friends had alcohol shots at Potbellys and that her “memory is very broken from that point forward.”

She also said she recalled being with a man in a cab and making her way into an apartment, where she said the rape occurred. Additionally, she said a man dressed her afterward, put her on a scooter and dropped her off at an intersection. Conflicting an earlier statement, she said she did not know where the alleged rape occurred.

Winston has not spoken about the case.

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