Final arguments in Calif. gang rape trial

March 31, 2011 at 5:45 PM
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SAN JOSE, Calif., March 31 (UPI) -- A young woman who claims she was gang-raped by eight members of a California college baseball team should be granted $7.5 million in damages, her lawyer says.

The woman is seeking damages in a civil case against two members of the De Anza College baseball team, claiming she was raped at an off-campus party on March 4, 2007 when she was 17 years old, the San Jose Mercury reported Thursday.

No criminal charges were filed in the case, as the California Attorney General's office determined everyone at the party, including the young woman, was drinking and there was insufficient evidence to charge anyone present with a crime, the newspaper said.

Citing a list of ailments the young woman claims to suffer from, from insomnia to suicidal thoughts, lead attorney Barbara Spector implored jurors to grant the damages sought as she made her final arguments.

"This is about defendants who failed to act with human decency and civility," Spector said. "Her emotional distress is genuine and it is real."

In his final argument, an attorney for one of the two former baseball players on trial in San Jose civil court blamed the woman for causing what he termed a "mess" and said the plaintiff was "on a mission for millions."

"This is the most bogus claim ever presented in this courthouse," Jeff Nevin, who represents former baseball player Christopher Knopf, said. "Can a woman who asked for sex in the most graphic terms, in the most graphic detail, say everyone who was there owes me millions?"

"If it's negligence to have sex with a gal who is drinking," Nevin said, "then put me away."

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