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Prosecutor: "No crime was committed" in alleged sexual assault

October 1, 2010

After reviewing evidence and statements from alleged victims and suspects, prosecutors determined that “no crime was committed” in an alleged on-campus sexual assault case reported in August, Ingham County Prosecutor Stuart Dunnings III said in a statement released Friday.

The alleged assault reportedly occurred between Aug. 29 and Aug. 30. Earlier this week, Dunnings told The State News he “believed” members of the MSU men’s basketball team were connected to the incident. A Michigan Messenger report published earlier this week alleged that the incident involved two basketball players.

Dunnings’s statement came after the start of a protest against the decision not to pursue charges. More than a dozen people gathered outside the prosecutor’s office beginning Friday morning and lasting into the afternoon.

On Friday, Dunnings released a police report with redacted names and a transcript of the interview of one of the suspects. In the statement, Dunnings said despite numerous reports indicating one of the men corroborated a story, the suspect’s account of the alleged sexual assault does not match that of the victim’s. Dunnings also said in the statement that the office has “handled the case regardless of status, and shown neither favor nor prejudice to any person.”

“Based on our review of all the materials, including a police report, actual interviews, and the specific details that were elicited
directly from the Complainant, our office reached the conclusion that no crime had been commited,” Dunnings said in the statement. “We therefore made the decision to decline to bring charges against the two men.”

Based on the transcripts from one of the men interviewed, Dunnings said the man did not corroborate the facts necessary to “substantiate a criminal sexual assault charge.”

In the transcripts, the interviewee tells two detectives the victim never explicitly asked either of the men to stop while having sex.

“She didn’t say stop,” the man told the detectives. “She was like, ‘I’m done.’”

According to the transcript, the man also told detectives that when she said she was done, he stopped, but the other man allegedly involved “talked her into” continuing. She could have stopped, he told detectives during the interview.

“The tone of her voice was like, she was done, but then he talked her into it, and she just let him go,” he said. “So I mean, I don’t really. I mean see, so like, I guess he talked her into it, but she, she could have stopped.”

He also told the detectives that he told her “I wasn’t going to make you stay there.”’

“I mean, like, if she wanted to leave, she could have left because, like, I wasn’t going to make her stay there,” he says in the transcript.

The interviewee told the detectives that when he spoke to the victim after the alleged incident, she said she was “alright.”

“I was like, ‘Are you alright?’ and she’s like, ‘Yeah. You alright,’” the man told detectives. “She just told me, like, basically, like, ‘You was alright. Don’t worry about nothing.’”

The report from the alleged suspect indicates that she felt she could not leave the room because of the size of the two men. She told police that she indicated to the men that she was not willing and that at one point, she struck one of the men, who told her to relax, according to the report.

“(She) explained to me that the body language displayed by (name redacted) and (name redacted) suggested she was not free to leave,” the report said. “She advised she felt trapped and cornered by (name redacted)‘s posture and proximity.”

The woman was told no charges would be pressed and explained the rationale for the decision, Dunnings said in the statement. She was told that she could come meet with prosecutors to further discuss the matter, the statement said.

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