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Attorney: Victim told accusing FSU QB of rape could ruin her life

Nov. 21, 2013 at 11:43 AM   |   Comments

TALLAHASSEE, Fla., Nov. 21 (UPI) -- A Florida detective advised against filing rape charges against a highly-ranked college quarterback because the victim's life might be ruined, her family says.

The statement by the victim's family attorney, Patricia Carroll, said a Tallahassee detective cautioned the victim against accusing Florida State University quarterback Jameis Winston because her life "will be made miserable," the Tampa Bay (Fla.) Times reported Wednesday.

Winston has not been arrested or charged with a crime. The 19-year-old came to FSU as the nation's No. 1 high school quarterback.

The family said the woman, who is from the Tampa Bay area and a student at FSU, was assaulted by Winston in December 2012. Police obtained a sexual assault kit on Dec. 7 when the victim reported the assault.

Winston's DNA was obtained within the past week, and it matched DNA found on the victim's underwear, the Orlando Sentinel reported.

He reportedly still had not been interviewed by investigators in connection with the assault as of Wednesday night.

After the alleged assault, the victim's family hired Carroll, who contacted Detective Scott Angulo in the Tallahassee police department after Winston was identified as the alleged suspect, the statement said.

The detective told Carroll, "Tallahassee was a big football town and the victim needs to think long and hard before proceeding against him because she will be raked over the coals and her life will be made miserable," the family said.

The statement added that Angulo refused to collect DNA from Winston or interview his roommate, a potential witness, because that could alert the quarterback and cause the case to go public.

Interim Tallahassee Police Chief Tom Coe said at a press conference the case was classified as "open but inactive" in February after the victim's attorney "indicated she did not want to move forward at this time."

The family statement said the victim and her attorney were available "at all times."

© 2013 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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