Judge rules Rose accuser must reveal her name publicly
LOS ANGELES >> A Los Angeles federal judge ruled Tuesday that a woman accusing NBA star Derrick Rose of rape cannot remain anonymous at her upcoming civil trial.
Lawyers for the woman, who is identified in court documents as Jane Doe, argued that her privacy should be protected because she is vulnerable and she has already been harassed after her name was leaked.
U.S. District Judge Michael W. Fitzgerald said the law was very clear on the issue and he wouldn't close his courtroom to protect her identity. He said any decision by the news media about whether to name her is a journalistic decision.
The Associated Press typically does not identify alleged victims of sexual abuse.
The woman sued Rose last year, claiming the former MVP and two of his friends raped her in August 2013 while she was incapacitated after a night of drinking. Rose and the others deny her claims and contend they had consensual sex with her that night.
The 30-year-old college student told the AP that her family knew nothing about her involvement with Rose or the lawsuit seeking $21.5 million and she wanted to keep it that way and avoid the spotlight.
But Rose's lawyer wanted her name made public and cited interviews and a news teleconference she conducted last week as a reason to use her real name.
The trial is scheduled to begin Oct. 4, which conflicts with Rose's preseason preparations for his first season with the New York Knicks.
Rose, 27, is one of the NBA's most prominent, but injury-prone, stars. He played his first seven seasons in Chicago, winning Rookie of the Year and, in 2011, MVP honors. He is in the final year of a five-year deal that will pay him $21.3 million this season.
Rose and the woman dated non-exclusively for two years before the alleged rape.
The woman acknowledges she drank vodka, wine and tequila before the incident and passed out after returning home from Rose's house. She contends Rose and his friends later entered her apartment through an unlocked door and that she awoke the next morning to find herself smeared with lubricant with her dress over her head and a used condom on the floor of her bedroom.
She was confused and her inquiries to Rose about what happened went unanswered, her court filings state.
"I felt just dirty," she told AP in a recent interview. "Like I didn't want to believe it was true."
Rose's lawyer has said she let the men in through two locked doors and was alert and cleaned up after having sex with the three.
Soon after Fitzgerald ruled on the issue of the woman's identity, Rose's attorney, Mark Baute, revealed the woman's name and was warned by the judge that she would remain anonymous until trial. He had her name struck from the record.
When Baute said her name a second time, Fitzgerald issued a stern rebuke and threatened to sanction him $1,000.
"Do not test my patience," Fitzgerald said.
Interest in the case has grown as it nears trial, especially in light of several high-profile cases of women who say they were raped while incapacitated.
The six-month jail term for ex-Stanford swimmer Brock Turner for sexually assaulting an unconscious woman sparked a public outcry over the punishment. Bill Cosby is fighting allegations by dozens of women who say he drugged and sexually abused them.
Former NFL All-Pro safety Darren Sharper was sentenced to more than 18 years in federal prison in August after he pleaded no contest to charges he drugged and raped women in four states.
There have been no criminal charges in Rose's case. The woman went to Los Angeles police two years after the incident and so far no evidence has been forwarded to the district attorney's office for review and possible prosecution.
Associated Press Writer Anthony McCartney contributed to this report.
TALK TO US
If you'd like to leave a comment (or a tip or a question) about this story with the editors, please email us. We also welcome letters to the editor for publication; you can do that by filling out our letters form and submitting it to the newsroom.