Punter Matt Araiza, who lost his NFL job after being implicated in an alleged gang rape, wasn’t present when the alleged incident occurred, Yahoo reported.
The outlet reviewed a transcript of more than 200 pages that reports what prosecutors in San Diego told the young woman and her attorneys as to why charges weren’t pressed.
The woman told police that Araiza and two teammates at San Diego State were at a party on Oct. 15, 2021, when Araiza walked her into a bedroom where “at least three other men” were waiting for her, according to a civil lawsuit she filed. Then 17, she said Araiza threw her on the bed and was part of a gang rape over a 90-minute period.
In her lawsuit, she acknowledged she had been drinking and said she was “in and out of consciousness” during the alleged assault.
San Diego police investigated her allegations for almost 10 months before giving the case to the district attorney without recommending prosecution.
The Buffalo Bills selected Araiza with the first pick of the sixth round in the 2022 draft. A prolific punter in college, he earned the starting job in preseason, during which he sent one punt sailing 82 yards in a game.
Soon after, the allegations emerged, and the Bills cut Araiza, 22. No team signed him, even after prosecutors announced last Dec. 7 that they wouldn’t be filing charges.
Few details emerged about their decision until Monday. The biggest takeaway from the Yahoo report was that the investigation by prosecutors determined Araiza left the premises about an hour before the time of the alleged assault.
“He wasn’t even at the party anymore,” deputy district attorney Trisha Amador explained to the alleged victim, per the Yahoo report. Later, Amador said, “All I know is that at that point, suspect Araiza is gone from the party.”
Also, prosecutors told the young woman that they had reviewed video recordings of the alleged incident and couldn’t determine that anything other than consensual sex with the other men in the room had taken place.
The attorney for the accuser, Dan Gilleon, told Fox News Digital that he intends to forge ahead with the civil suit and that his client will not be “bullied.”
“This case is going to trial, and we’ll force Araiza to talk,” Gilleon told Fox.
Some witnesses in the investigation have said the young woman didn’t appear to be intoxicated and that she told some of the people at the party that she was 18, per the report. It also indicated that the woman told her friends that night that she had consensual sex with at least two men at the party before the alleged assault.
–Field Level Media