A key witness in the Kobe Bryant rape case is speaking out for the first time about what the basketball star's accuser told him right after the alleged attack, saying "I believe her" account of what happened that night and "this thing should have went to trial. One of Pietrack's co-workers, a year-old front desk clerk, said Bryant raped her that night after she gave him a tour of the hotel. Bryant said the two had sex but claims it was consensual.
Bryant, whose trial had been days from opening arguments, responded with an apology to the woman who had accused him and whose civil suit for damages is still pending. She has been the subject of death threats and relentless media coverage in the high-profile case. Neither Bryant nor his accuser were in the courtroom.
Fourteen months after a year-old hotel worker accused basketball superstar Kobe Bryant of rape, the charges against him were suddenly dropped Wednesday, just days before his trial was to begin. Eagle County Dist. Had Bryant been convicted, the franchise would have been crippled.
Kobe Bryant and the woman who accused him of sexual assault settled her civil lawsuit out of court Wednesday, marking the end of an often-graphic month legal saga that drew worldwide attention but never resulted in a trial. District Judge Richard Matsch to dismiss the case. Although there was no mention of a financial payout in the court filing or the statement, the Laker guard is widely believed to have agreed to write a check to the woman to bring about a quiet conclusion to the case. The settlement could be a lump sum or could be set up as a trust with payments made every year contingent upon compliance with the confidentiality agreement, sources said.
The case never went to trial after the woman decided she didn't want to testify, and the charges were dropped. Because the whole process for me was trying to figure out how to cope with this. I wasn't going to be passive and let this thing just swallow me up.
The Kobe Bryant rape case was dismissed yesterday in Eagle, Colo. Bryant of sexual assault was unwilling to testify, leaving the state no option but to drop all charges. The decision, which capped a yearlong drama of legal maneuvering and debate about the nation's rape laws -- going to Colorado's highest court three times and to the United States Supreme Court once -- came after meetings with the woman, her family and her lawyers, the district attorney in the case, Mark Hurlbert, said.
The Kobe Bryant sexual assault case began in July when the news media reported that the sheriff's office in Eagle, Coloradohad arrested professional basketball player Kobe Bryant in connection with an investigation of a sexual assault complaint filed by a year-old hotel employee. The woman accused Bryant of raping her in his hotel room on July 1, the night before the surgery. Bryant admitted to an adulterous sexual encounter with his accuser, but denied the assault allegation.
Eagle County District Judge Terry Ruckriegle made the announcement in a hastily called, late-afternoon hearing. It came after prosecutors filed a motion for dismissal. Read full statement. Although Bryant stopped short of acknowledging guilt, he did acknowledge the alleged victim's viewpoint.
After a frustrating season that saw the Los Angeles Lakers fail to win a fourth straight championship, Bryant was in town for an operation on his knee. A year-old concierge at the hotel showed the superstar and his security team to their rooms, and caught his eye. Bryant, a new father of a six-month-old daughter, made small talk with the blonde, and once they arrived at his room, he took her aside and requested that she come back later to give him a private tour of the hotel.