Rape Trial Starts for Two Former BYU Football Players

Rape Trial Starts for Two Former BYU Football Players

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Sam Penrod ReportingThe trial began today for two former BYU football players accused of raping a 17-year old girl last year.

It was a day full of testimony from the now 18-year old woman who described today what she says happened at an off campus apartment in Provo a year ago. She says she came forward to police to prevent someone else from going through what she did.

The woman described meeting several football players at the Provo Mall, including BJ Mathis and Ibrahim Rashada, who are on trial. She says she went home to Sandy, but returned to their apartment in Provo at around 11:30 that night to "hang out."

She said she and her 19 year old cousin were given a drink of vodka by some of the players and later they turned on a pornographic video. The woman says she became sick and went to one of the bedrooms to rest, and later awoke to find the men raping her. But defense attorneys dispute her account and say this case comes down to consent.

Jere Reneer, Defense Attorney: "There are some graphic facts, but the facts are what the facts are and we've got to present those facts, and I'm fairly confident the jury is going to see that this girl was in control of herself the whole time and she wants to say she wasn't."

The victim's parents released this statement: "Our daughter has fulfilled her responsibility. We are so very proud of her. She has endured the past year's night terrors and she will continue to endure. She is a strong individual."

The prosecution will call more witnesses tomorrow. The trial is expected to take most of next week.

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