Three members of the University of Oregon basketball team have been suspended following a sexual assault investigation that resulted in the district attorney declining to press charges. The allegations are absolutely horrific.
In a police report released by the Eugene Police Department on Monday evening, the three Oregon players - Damyean Dotson, Dominic Artis and incoming transfer Brandon Austin - are accused of assaulting the victim three separate times in two locations over the course of the night of March 8th. According to the victim's statement, the players twice assaulted her in a bathroom at a house party (during which they kept her phone out of her reach, a contention confirmed by Dotson), then physically forced her into a cab and took her to the players' apartment, where all three raped her, ignoring her repeated protests and ending the assault only after she started crying. After interviewing the victim, suspects and witnesses, the District Attorney's office declined to prosecute, stating:
"While there is no doubt the incidents occurred, the conflicting statements and actions by the victim make this case unprovable as a criminal case."
Despite this, along with phone conversations between the victim and Artis, who stated that he "absolutely did [do something wrong], and said he felt bad about the situation," and the victim and Dotson, who called the incident "something no one should have to go through, and called it a lesson learned for him," apparently the victim was too unreliable for a prosecution
It remains to be seen whether the Ducks' coach, Dana Altman, will face any heat for this, especially regarding Austin, who was the most forceful aggressor and was previously suspended from Providence's basketball team following a sexual assault allegation, only to be welcomed to Oregon with open arms because
"[I]n talking with their coaching staff, we felt like this was something that was not of a serious nature and we'd be able to move on from there,"
but until the Ducks start losing basketball games or Phil Knight's money, the answer to that will surely remain a resounding "no."
The "conflicting statements and actions" that apparently made this an unprovable case include the victim staying at the players' house until the next morning and engaging in consensual sexual contact with Artis the next morning, and with basketball player Joseph Young later in the day, along with waiting to report the rape until her father filed a report after the two spoke.
As always, the rules for sexual assault charges to be fully pursued remain untenable: Definitely be sober, but if you're drunk, be very obviously drunk, but then it's kind of your fault for being so drunk. Violently resist because otherwise you actually wanted it, but if it's inevitable, just enjoy it, but that means you actually really wanted it. Never engage in any sexual contact with your rapist after the rape or else you weren't actually raped, and don't do it beforehand or else you're obviously lying, and also don't have sex with anyone else around the same time or else you're a slut, and who can believe a slut? Report your rape immediately, but not the next morning because you're probably just ashamed of that sex you regret. Always have physical evidence of your rape, but who can really trust physical evidence anyway? Make sure you're only raped by one person because your rapists' matching stories days after being contacted by police are more believable than your best memory of the night before, when you were drunk. And absolutely always have an airtight case against your rapists, because the most minute inconsistencies in your memory or story (or failing that, any perceived character flaw or moral failing whatsoever) will be used to tear you apart in the media and with the public. Besides, why would you not file a report? If you're telling the truth, you have no reason to be hesitant about it!
Basically, fuck everything and everybody and the whole world sucks.
As for the impact this will have on the Ducks' basketball prospects for 2014-15, who gives a shit?
Joshua David can be found on Twitter at @joshuaadavidd.
Image via HYPEBEAST.