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Sexual assault charges against Tigers pitcher Evan Reed dismissed

Aug 21, 2014, 4:30 PM EDT

Evan Reed Getty Getty Images

Back in July Tigers pitcher Evan Reed — currently with the Toledo Mud Hens — was charged with two counts of criminal sexual conduct arising out of an alleged incident at the Motor City Casino Hotel in Detroit back in March. Today the charges have been dismissed after prosecutors failed to convince the judge presiding over the case that there was probable cause a crime was committed:

[Judge] King said he had doubts about the credibility of the 45-year-old woman who claimed Reed sexually assaulted her in a sixth-floor hotel room at Motor City Casino after the two met at a bar in Royal Oak. He said prosecutors failed to meet the burden of probable cause on accusations that Reed forced or coerced her into two sexual acts while she was physically or mentally incapacitated . . . He said there was no rape kit evidence or evidence of semen from the scene presented by prosecutors.

He also noted that the accuser’s testimony was contradicted in places by text messages she sent the night of the alleged assault.

If the case had gone to trial, Reed could have faced a sentence of 15 years. Prosecutors have the opportunity to appeal the finding of no probable cause, but they have not decided if they will or not.

  1. tfbuckfutter - Aug 21, 2014 at 4:47 PM

    Well.

    This should be a fun thread.

    • fearlessleader - Aug 21, 2014 at 4:56 PM

      Lord, give me the strength not to refresh the page….

  2. uknowimright1 - Aug 21, 2014 at 4:54 PM

    [And you're banned. Quit being misogynist asshats, fellas]

    • tfbuckfutter - Aug 21, 2014 at 5:02 PM

      There it is!

      • Kevin S. - Aug 21, 2014 at 5:21 PM

        I had 24 minutes in the office pool… what do I win?

      • tfbuckfutter - Aug 21, 2014 at 5:25 PM

        You get to watch the banhammer first hand, apparently.

      • historiophiliac - Aug 21, 2014 at 5:33 PM

        You win this:

    • historiophiliac - Aug 21, 2014 at 5:07 PM

      I know, right. He just can’t help himself — but, dudes, this is how you get yourself into trouble. Reed’s making $500K this year and he just dropped a chunk of it on legal fees. Save your dough. Don’t ho.

    • doctorofsmuganomics - Aug 21, 2014 at 6:44 PM

      I miss everything. damn it

      • historiophiliac - Aug 21, 2014 at 6:52 PM

        Thanks, I needed a refill in my cup. ;)

  3. asimonetti88 - Aug 21, 2014 at 5:42 PM

    Dropping the charges does not necessarily mean Reed did nothing wrong. But it does mean that it is less likely that he did. You gotta wonder what the dude is doing at a casino/hotel at late night during the season at the very least… you got games to play man!

  4. historiophiliac - Aug 21, 2014 at 6:25 PM

    from the Detroit Free Press:

    “Reed’s attorneys, Ben Gonek and David Gorcyca, passed out packets to the media that appear to be filed by the woman’s ex-husband in a 2008 divorce case, including allegations that attack her character.”

    I can’t imagine why more women don’t report rapes. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to go look at puppy pictures or something so I don’t hate the world so much.

    • clydeserra - Aug 21, 2014 at 6:33 PM

      Did they introduce character evidence at the preliminary hearing?

      Lawyers that talk to the media about specifics criminal cases are gross.

      • historiophiliac - Aug 21, 2014 at 6:36 PM

        The article said the woman and her friend testified and an investigator. Most of the judge’s comments seem to be about his own conclusions about her testimony and the evidence — he didn’t reference any info from character evidence. I think these packets were strictly for the media (not for court).

      • raysfan1 - Aug 21, 2014 at 7:33 PM

        …but does show where the defense would have gone were the case to go to trial.

        Puppies are cute.

      • kappy32 - Aug 22, 2014 at 4:24 AM

        Character evidence is a question of fact for the jury to determine, not a matter of law for the judge to determine. What occurred here is a pre-trial hearing to determine whether there was, in fact, probable cause for the defendant to be charged and for the case to continue. In order for a person to be arrested, there must be probable cause that the defendant committed the crime. Depending upon the state in which state the alleged crime took place in, the evidence is either brought to a grand jury to determine whether there is probable cause to indict (formally charge) the defendant, or a judge will review the evidence typically within 10 days of arrest to determine whether probable cause exists & whether the case should go forward. Regardless of the procedure, defense counsel will make a motion challenging the existence of probable cause & if a judge feels that enough issues have been raised in the motion, he or she will hold a pre-trial hearing where the People will present their evidence to demonstrate probable cause. While there is no clear legal definition of probable cause, the most common understanding is that probable cause exists when “it is more likely than not that the defendant in question committed the crime he or she is being accused of.” Determining whether PC exists is purely a question of law for a judge to determine. It is outside the scope of the responsibilities of a jury to determine because it’s existence, while based upon tangible evidence, is determined using prior case law precedent & criminal procedure statutes. Therefore, when the judge is determining whether PC existed, he is not supposed to take into account the credibility of the witnesses testifying. He is only supposed to take into account the sum & substance of that testimony & he must view it “in a light most favorable to the prosecution.” That is what he did here & it is obvious that the evidence didn’t add up.

        Now, on the other hand, credibility of a witness is a question of fact for a jury to determine. That means that in addition to the sum & substance of the witness’ testimony, the jury can take into account any evidence presented to impeach the credibility of the witness. This could include a reputation amongst the witness’ community of being a liar, or a prior conviction for a crime of moral terptitude (perjury, larceny, etc.). Adding another layer to this already complicated situation is that every state (and the federal rules of evidence) has evidentiary laws that protect the alleged victim of sexual assault from having her character assassinated due to prior sexual history. These laws are more commonly known as the “Rape Shield Laws” and they were at the forefront of the Kobe Bryant rape case. A defense attorney cannot attack the complaining witness’ credibility due to her having a promiscuous past. On the other hand, if the complaining witness has a history of filing false rape claims, or has a sexual history with the defendant, that information may be used to impeach the credibility of the complaining witness. The general rule is that unless you are the complaining witness in a sexual assault case, when you are a witness in a criminal matter just about anything that you have done in the past is fair game for opposing counsel to grill you on during cross examination in an attempt to assassinate your credibility. It is important that the opposing counsel has documented proof of the allegations he will make against the witness as well. If you are testifying in a friend’s drug dealing case on behalf of him as a character witness & you have a drug arrest & conviction yourself, rest assured that the opposing counsel will bring it up, make you admit to it, and hammer it home to the jury that you can’t be trusted. Your credibility as a witness has been successfully assassinated.

      • clydeserra - Aug 22, 2014 at 9:49 AM

        wow. I was going to just disagree with your law on a couple of points, but then I read your men’s rights manifesto and I know you are insane.

        Character is always an issue. But as you say for truthfullness. that you had a bad divorce/marriage is not truthfulness, I am not sure the ex husband is a witness for that,

        My original point was its lame of lawyers to make extra judicial statements.

      • historiophiliac - Aug 22, 2014 at 8:18 AM

        Do you think Kappy’s a lawyer *and* a show off or just a show off?

      • clydeserra - Aug 22, 2014 at 9:49 AM

        just a show off. He is wrong on a few points of law, and WAAAAAAAAAAAAYYYYYY wrong on life.

    • aiede - Aug 21, 2014 at 8:23 PM

      When Gorcyca was a county prosecutor near Detroit, his office tried to claim that Harry Potter and Little House on the Prairie were “non-erotic pornography” that showed an unhealthy interest in children by a defendant who got dragged through unsuccessful prosecutions on a kindergarten teacher child abuse case before the prosecutor who replaced Gorcyca finally dropped the case for lack of evidence.

      I’d love to see what Gorcyca, now a criminal defense attorney, thinks character assassination looks like if he was willing to call Little House on the Prairie porn as a prosecutor.

      • historiophiliac - Aug 21, 2014 at 8:49 PM

        Let’s hope it’s along that vein…not that it would keep people from vilifying her anyway if the info went public.

  5. rawdog2013 - Aug 21, 2014 at 8:14 PM

    Sounds like the road to the World Series goes through the police department for the Hyenas.

  6. papacrick - Aug 21, 2014 at 8:25 PM

    This wasn’t during the season. It was the day before opening day and he hadn’t made his MLB debut yet

  7. budzo83 - Aug 21, 2014 at 8:44 PM

    Tigers bullpen problems solved!

  8. kappy32 - Aug 22, 2014 at 3:54 AM

    I am utterly amazed that in a case like this, justice was actually served. In America today, liberals & feminists have been lashing out against what they call America’s “Rape Culture.” They say that it is an epidemic in colleges across the country, citing a survey which “concluded” that 1 in 4 females will be sexually assaulted during their 4 years in college. What they failed to state in this survey was that the population was given a gift card upon completing the survey, and that “sexual assault” consisted of acts such as “kissing a male whom you are/were not attracted to at a time when you are/were intoxicated from alcohol and/or drugs.” Yes, that is verbatim from the survey & if the person selected “yes” then that answer was considered an act of “sexual assault.” If that is the case, as a male I was sexually assaulted just about every weekend in college due to kidding a chick I found unattractive while wasted. The more accurate number for females being sexually assaulted during their 4 years in college is 1-in-45. I am not insensitive to the matter, and I feel that the 1-in-45 number is disgusting. However, we cannot make it seem like colleges across the US are filled with drunk sexual predators where every female who seeks a higher education is risking her life for that degree.

    I understand that Reed is not a college kid & the complainant was a 45-year old woman, but what has occurred in the US due to this liberal “Rape Culture” label is that far too many young men are being convicted – or otherwise punitively punished – based upon lies, conjecture, ulterior motives, and revenge. Far too many courts are unwilling to dismiss sexual assault cases when it is clear as a summer day that the “victim” is lying. Then, as a result of the liberal labeling of America accepting a “Rape Culture,” the pool of jurors who will determine the defendant’s guilt has been tainted before they even stepped foot in the jury box. Unfortunately, like many other key points of the liberal agenda (namely race & affirmative action), the second you challenge the notion of a “Rape Culture” you are deemed to be narcissistic & insensitive to women who have been actual victims of sexual assaults. The supporters of this notion don’t even bother with facts, nor do they take into account the facts their opponent(s) cited in their argument; they just stoop to name-calling & whining. It is the same thing as arguing against affirmative action. If you tell a liberal that affirmative action has run it’s course & has become a tool to increase the racial divide than decrease it, the liberal will not have a rebuttal based upon facts, they will just simply, unabashedly call you a racist & not think twice about it.

    I’m just glad that the judge in this case did the right thing. I have followed this case since it started & it didn’t pass the smell test. It gives me hope that not all is lost in the justice system & that there are jurists who actually do what the law says, not what public opinion dictates.

    • unclemosesgreen - Aug 22, 2014 at 5:38 AM

      Seeing you weep bitter tears over the decline of your white male privilege is hilarious. More please.

      • Old Gator - Aug 22, 2014 at 6:41 AM

        I kinda liked the bit in Abbot and Costello Meet Frankenstein where Lou Costello and Larry Talbot (Lon Chaney Jr) are locked in a jail cell together and Talbot becomes frantic because a full moon is due to rise. When Lou tells Talbot to calm down, Talbot replies, “You don’t understand! When the moon comes up, I turn into a wolf!” And Costello says “Yeah, you and six million other guys.”

    • clydeserra - Aug 22, 2014 at 9:59 AM

      you are right. Men have had it tough.

      look, i didn’t read this all, its long, its stupid, but I will point out to you that an unwanted “kiss” is an assault of a sexual nature regardless of whether or not you or anyone else had been drinking.

      So, in conclusion, don’t assault people.

      • stlouis1baseball - Aug 22, 2014 at 10:58 AM

        Clyde…
        He is talking about kissing with beer goggles on.
        So in that case…if the question posed was in fact “verbatim”…I was sexually assaulted a lot.
        I mean…a lot. In fact, I used to wear my beer goggles much like prescription eye wear.

        Disclaimer:
        I am NOT (under any circumstances) condoning or making lite of sexual assault and/or rape. I am merely pointing out how ludicrous that survey was if in fact that was the question posed.

      • Reflex - Aug 22, 2014 at 3:43 PM

        People like him tend to take things out of context and oversimplify in an attempt to discredit. The part about the survey that is most interesting to me is the fact that it aligns very well with what I have seen. Anyone who has spent any time dealing with campus life (dorm management, mentorship, advising) will tell you that if anything the numbers there are low and/or underreported. My previous partner spent years as a resident mentor at MSU, and this issue was a near constant.

        Even worse was the stalkerish behavior of celebrity athletes, and police unwillingness to pursue claims because “He could have any girl, why would he stalk one who is unwilling?” Total comprehension fail of the reasons behind stalking.

        1 in 4 seems low to me. Almost every female I know who attended college for at least four years has at least one story. Either a stalker or someone overaggressive at a party/get together. Oftentimes worse than that.

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