Prosecutors in Eagle, Colo. drop all charges after Kobe Bryant's accuser gets an apology and decides not to testify. The last straw for her apparently came when her name was released on a jury questionnaire to a Denver TV station last week. The accuser's civil suit against Bryant proceeds (for now), but the Lakers' gamble to remake the team around a star facing felony prison time looks prescient now. As part of an agreement with the 20-year-old accuser, Bryant's attorney read a statement from him in court.
"I want to apologize to her for my behavior that night and for the consequences she has suffered in the past year. Although this year has been incredibly difficult for me personally, I can only imagine the pain she has had to endure. I also want to apologize to her parents and family members, and to my family and friends and supporters, and to the citizens of Eagle, Colo.
Although I truly believe this encounter between us was consensual, I recognize now that she did not and does not view this incident the same way I did. After months of reviewing discovery, listening to her attorney, and even her testimony in person, I now understand how she feels that she did not consent to this encounter.
I issue this statement today fully aware that while one part of this case ends today, another remains. I understand that the civil case against me will go forward. That part of this case will be decided by and between the parties directly involved in the incident and will no longer be a financial or emotional drain on the citizens of the state of Colorado."
The case ends just days before opening statements in the trial were set to begin. The accuser's attorney says: "The difficulties that this case has imposed on this woman the past year are unimaginable.'' Not the least that her address, phone number, email address and a photo of her home were posted on websites last year, including notoriously a site by a recent USC grad. The woman of course was then harassed, including death threats.
* Edited post