Jury Deliberates In BYU Rape Trial

Jury Deliberates In BYU Rape Trial


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Sam Penrod reporting Today could be it for the rape trial of two former BYU football players. The jury is deliberating right now.

The jury received the case at 10:30 this morning. It is now up to the seven men and one woman jury to decide if what happened a year ago in Provo was consensual or rape.

BJ Mathis and Ibrahim Rashada are accused of giving alcohol to a then 17-year old girl, and then sexually assaulting her in an off campus apartment.

For the last five days witnesses have testified in the case, ranging from the victim herself, to other players who were there and took plea deals.

Today both the prosecution and the defense gave their closing arguments to the jury. The defense says it was consensual, the prosecution calls it rape.

Donna Kelly, Prosecutor: "We are very happy for the jury to decide that issue. The evidence overwhelmingly supports our case."

Jere Reneer, Defense Attorney: "I think we've shown through the presentation of evidence, including their own witnesses, that's what it still comes down to."

The judge did dismiss the count of dealing in harmful material to a minor, ruling that prosecutors failed to show either Mathis or Rashada had any involvement in showing a pornographic DVD to the victim. But the jury will have to decide on two counts of first degree felony aggravated sexual assault, providing alcohol to a minor and obstructing justice.

We will bring the news of the verdict when it happens, today on Eyewitness News.

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