The Orlando Sentinel, along with many other media sources, reports that legal issues from the past will continue to haunt star Florida State University quarterback Jameis Winston. The quarterback announced on Wednesday January 7 that he would enter the NFL draft. How the case pending in Florida will influence his future remains to be seen.
Winston has been accused of a rape that allegedly took place in December of 2012 at his off-campus apartment. He has consistently maintained that the encounter was consensual but his accuser is now suing FSU and demanding a trial by jury. She asserts that her Title IX rights were violated and that the school failed to investigate the incident adequately. Her rights were allegedly violated after she was harassed and threatened when her name was made publicly available after she filed a criminal complaint. She claims the harassment forced her to leave the school. The Sentinel reports that the complaint alleges that FSU hindered the Tallahassee Police Department's investigation in an effort to protect Winston's football career.
Though Winston is not named in the recent civil suit, the lawsuit filed against FSU will likely keep unflattering publicity near the forefront of any media coverage about Winston. Thus far, Winston has not been charged with rape and likely won't be. Unfortunately, the court of public opinion may still pass judgment on the young man and his NFL prospects may suffer as a result.