With a couple of weeks away from the NFL draft, top prospect Jameis Winston is being sued for an allege sexual assault that took place in 2012.
Matt Baker of the Tampa Bay Times reports that Erica Kinsman filed a lawsuit Thursday. The suite accuses Winston of sexual battery, assault, false imprisonment and “intentional infliction of emotional distress arising out of forcible rape.” The Tampa Bay Times reports that Kinsman seeks damages in excess of $15,000.READ MORE: Getting Answers: What Do Increased Releases From Folsom Dam Mean For Region's Water Levels?
According to Yahoo Sports, the 2013 Heisman Trophy winner was not charged with the crime due to insufficient evidence. Florida State also cleared Winston of not violating its code of conduct in 2014.READ MORE: 'This Isn't Going To Hold Us Back': Drag Event In Woodland Stopped Over Alleged Threats Of Violence
Whether this lawsuit will affect the quarterback in the NFL draft has yet to be determined. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are expected to draft Winston with the number one overall pick.MORE NEWS: California Lawmakers Demand Accountability After Personal Info Of Concealed Weapons Holders Leaked
Below is a statement from Kinsman’s attorney.
Today, a very brave young woman filed her lawsuit against Jameis Winston for the sexual battery that she reported to police in December 2012. Over the past two years, this survivor of sexual violence has had to endure a delinquent police investigation, a hostile FSU athletic department, and Mr. Winston’s bullying lawyer. But the more these forces sought to silence her, the more determined she has become to step forward and hold Jameis Winston accountable for his actions. With the support of her family, she is prepared for this fight and for the counterclaims and the smear campaigns that will surely follow.
We know that quite often the public is quick to support the cause against sexual violence but at times can be slow to support the individual women who come forward. We hope that this case becomes a model for understanding what real sexual assault cases look like as well as the barriers that survivors face in coming forward. Perhaps more than anything, Erica hopes to show other survivors the strength and empowerment that can come from refusing to stay silent no matter what forces are against you.
Jameis Winston in contrast has proven time and time again to be an entitled athlete who believes he can take what he wants. He took something here that he was not entitled to and he hurt someone. There are consequences for that behavior and since others have refused to hold him accountable, our client will.