ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. - Investigative documents are shedding new light on why charges were dropped in the case of an alleged rape near the campus of the University of Central Florida.
9 Investigates' Karla Ray went through 150 pages of court filings and read prosecutor’s notes that spell out exactly why the case against two men did not move forward.
The young woman who reported the situation repeatedly told investigators that she was blackout drunk, so due to her memory being hindered, paperwork shows state prosecutors needed more evidence.
Other witnesses who were at the same party did not believe the woman was so drunk that she could not consent to sex.
Just hours after leaving the off-campus fraternity party, court records show that UCF student checked herself in to Florida Hospital East with multiple bruises, and told Orange County Sheriff’s Office deputies that she was sexually assaulted.
According to an incident report obtained by 9 Investigates, that woman told a detective she was "heavily intoxicated with alcohol and only remembers snapshots of the night." She went on to say that she was "passed out and woke up to two males sexually battering her."
Witness statements and a photo lineup led to the arrests of two men. One of those men told deputies the woman was "fully engaged during his involvement with her and does not believe that she was blackout drunk."
Prosecutor notes show another partygoer "came forward and stated that he engaged in coherent conversation with the woman in the kitchen just prior to her walking upstairs" with the two men. That witness stated she "did not seem severely intoxicated: she was not stumbling while she walked or slurring her words in conversation."
That witness statement and others played a major role in the decision not to take the case to trial. Prosecutors wrote, "Without a witness to testify that the VT was obviously in a blacked out state -- that she was vomiting/slurring her words/stumbling -- one in which she could not have knowingly consented to sex, the State is unable to prove a sexual battery was committed beyond a reasonable doubt."
Documents do show at least two people told deputies a different story. One witness said the woman was "slurring her words and stumbling while she was walking." Another stated she was "not sober enough to make decisions for herself."
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