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SAN DIEGO — The San Diego County District Attorney’s Office announced Wednesday that they have completed their review of an alleged off-campus sexual assault near San Diego State University and will not be pursuing criminal charges.
The reported sexual assault alleged that several members of the SDSU football team were involved in the rape of an unconscious, underaged girl at an off-campus party in October 2021.
“Ultimately, prosecutors determined it is clear the evidence does not support the filing of criminal charges and there is no path to a potential criminal conviction. Prosecutors can only file charges when they ethically believe they can be proven beyond a reasonable doubt,” a news release from San Diego District Attorney Summer Stephan’s office said.
On Aug. 5, 2022, the District Attorney’s Office received the San Diego Police Department’s investigation for review, which did not recommend criminal charges, the news release said.
During the course of their 124-day review, DA prosecutors and investigators analyzed over 35 taped witness interviews, the results of a Sexual Assault Response Team (SART) exam, DNA results and evidence gathered from 10 search warrants, prosecutors said.
Four terabytes of data were recovered from the search warrants, which included video evidence from the alleged incident, the news release said.
Prosecutors said they evaluated the case for potential criminal charges including statutory rape, forcible rape, forcible oral copulation, rape by intoxication and oral copulation by intoxication.
“The expert and experienced team of Deputy District Attorneys and DA Investigators reviewing this case have been thorough, thoughtful, and careful to take the constitutional and statutory rights of all involved into consideration before concluding that the DA’s Office cannot ethically file criminal charges in this matter” the news release said.
The law firm representing the woman publicly released the initial police report in Sept. 2022. The report was filed on Oct. 18, 2021, and names one person who told police that she was intoxicated and “incapable of giving consent” for sexual intercourse which allegedly occurred on Oct. 16, 2021.
The accuser, who was just 17 at the time of the alleged incident, told officers with the San Diego Police Department that a group of male suspects forced her into intercourse against her will at a home in San Diego’s College Area neighborhood.
A civil lawsuit filed in August named former Buffalo Bills player Matt Araiza, as well as his former SDSU teammates Zavier Leonard and Nowlin “Pa’a” Ewaliko, as three men involved in the alleged assault.
Araiza was drafted by the Bills in the 6th round of April’s 2022 NFL Draft, but was released in August following him being named in the sexual assault allegations.
During the course of the alleged sexual assault investigation, a separate investigation was opened by SDPD against Ewaliko on suspicion of possession of unlawful pornography, which is unrelated to the alleged sexual assault case, according to investigators.