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LOS ANGELES (AP) – NBA star Derrick Rose and two friends were cleared Wednesday in a $21.5 million lawsuit that accused them of gang raping his ex-girlfriend when she was incapacitated from drugs or alcohol.
Jurors in Los Angeles federal court reached the verdict in less than four hours after concluding there was a lack of evidence to support the woman’s claims and dismissing her account as unbelievable.
“It felt like she was playing us,” said a juror who would only give his first name as Jared. “The second her lawyer started questioning her, she would start crying. I mean, granted, that could be realistic, but I feel l’m pretty good at reading people, and I felt as if it was false.”
Jared was among several jurors who spoke to reporters outside the courthouse, none of whom gave their full names.
Rose remained stoic as the verdict was read and later thanked jurors and posed for photos with them in the lobby, draping his left arm around each one who wanted a souvenir of the Knicks point guard as one of his lawyers snapped photos on their phones.
“I am thankful that the jury understood and agreed with me,” Rose said in a statement. “This experience and my sensitivity to it was deep. I am ready to put this behind me and focus on my family and career.”
The case was X-rated at times with testimony from the men about poolside group sex at a mansion Rose rented in Beverly Hills in the summer of 2013 and multiple sexual encounters throughout the night and into the next morning.