On Friday, it was announced that Florida wide receiver Antonio Callaway was found not guilty of sexual assault in the University of Florida's Title IX hearing last Friday. Callaway's attorney Huntley Johnson released a copy of the Title IX investigation ruling, which included some details regarding the information that went into the decision to find Callaway to be not guilty. In short, as summarized by 247Sports, the Title IX investigation found that Callaway did have sex with his accuser, the burden of proof that Callaway caused his accuser bodily hard, or assaulted his accuser from "the totality of evidence" was not met. Below is an excerpt from Johnson's release of the ruling, courtesy of Rivals.com.
The following quotes below are from Jake Schickel, the Title IX hearing officer who presided over the case. Schickel, as reported by ESPN last week, is a current Florida football booster. Callaway's accuser refused to attend the hearing, claiming that Schickel's presence made the case biased.
Below is the text from the letter of Schickel's decision:
"Immediately prior to the hearing I was provided a letter which was made part of the record from Mr. Clune, asking me to recuse myself. I denied the request. While he did not impugn my integrity he was concerned with bias. I recounted my experience training, education and life involvements and indicated that I did not believe that I would be biased in any way in favor of or against any of the parties. I have prosecuted rape cases, I have sat in judgment of lawyers. My family has dealt with rape issues. Note that this was a Student Conduct Hearing which is often held by a member of the university community. The issue is an alleged conduct violation by Mr. Callaway.
Mr. Callaway offered two (2) affidavits which I declined to accept other than as a proffer because they were not provided more than seven (7) days prior to the hearing.
Additionally I declined to accept , other than as a proffer, a notebook of e-mail's and text messages that went back and forth between various members of the university community and the advisors to [REDACTED] and Mr. Callaway. I did not accept the character witness statements offered by [REDACTED] as not relevant at this point in the proceedings. I further found the photographs embedded within the text messages not relevant.
I found that text messages which were not sent/received on the night in question were not relevant. I find, any prior sexual acts or sexual acts subsequent to the incident by were not relevant.
Prior to the hearing I had reviewed the record which included the pre -investigation, the Title 9 Investigative Report and various interviews, text message conversations and additional documents submitted by the parties and affidavits. I also reviewed the questions prepared by Mr. Callaway. [REDACTED] had not submitted any questions to be asked of the witnesses at the hearing.
Specifically as to the evidence I excluded the affidavits of Mr. as being inconsistent. I accepted the affidavits (or parts thereof) that were sent/received the night of the incident. I excluded all others as not relevant. I accepted the initial complaint to the University dated January 27, 2016. The investigative report is included in the materials. I do find the parties engaged in sexual intercourse. At issue is consent and injuries. I read 4(a)(l) of the student conduct code to require physical injury or endangering another's health or safety. Implicit in that is consent as set forth in 4(b)(l) & (2). Thus the question is whether [REDACTED] was "unable due to age, disability or alcohol/chemical or other impairment to give consent." There was no issue of being unable to consent due to age or disability.
I noted the statements by [REDACTED] in the investigation report wherein she stated did not consent because of intoxication and/or force, However the totality of the evidence suggest the contrary and she was not intoxicated to the extent she could not consent. The affidavits all indicated that [REDACTED] did not appear intoxicated. Further her own text messages indicated that she was pretending to be intoxicated.
The ER Reports do not suggest injuries nor do any of her statements. [REDACTED] was at Mr. Callaway 's residence voluntarily and not at the request of Mr. Callaway. Others were present the whole time she was at Mr. Callaway's. She was not detained at any point nor did she ask for help from any of the persons present including another woman.
I further find that the time line as indicated by the various text message date stamps do not support her contention s of force or an inability to consent, They are inconsistent, initially reported being forced to have sex and then some time later indicated that she thought she was going to be forced to have sex. Another time she stated that she wasn't sure if she had been.
The only live witness was Mr. Callaway.
As a fact finder it is my impression that Mr. Callaway was honest, sincere, and presented himself well. He testified the sexual encounter was consensual, at least on the part of [REDACTED].
Both Mr. Callaway and [REDACTED] admitted he was high on marijuana. She stated, he was "faded as [expletive]". He stated, "I was so stoned I had no interest in having sex with anyone." He stated she was the aggressor.
The burden of proof in a Student Conduct Hearing is the preponderance of the evidence or "more likely than not".
The counter complaint was not heard as an investigation has not been completed by the University at this time.
For all of the foregoing reasons and from the totality of the evidence I find that the burden of proof was not met and I find Mr. Callaway not responsible."
The accuser's attorney, John Clune, told the Tampa Bay Times that an appeal is unlikely at this point in time. If the woman does decide to appeal, she has ten days to do so. Earlier this week it was announced that Callaway would not be facing any criminal charges for the alleged incident. The University of Florida released a statement last week denying any bias in choosing the football booster, Jake Schickel, to adjudicate the case.
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