A Florida woman filed a civil lawsuit against former Florida State University quarterback and NFL prospect Jameis Winston that accuses him of sexual battery, assault, false imprisonment and intentionally inflicting “emotional distress” in December 2012. Erica Kinsman said the now 21-year-old quarterback forcibly raped her after allegedly spiking her drink. Winston claimed the sex was consensual.
Kinsman seeks damages in excess of $15,000 to be determined by a jury. After the alleged rape, Kinsman said that local law enforcement officials pressured her not to press charges against Winston. She was the victim of widespread harassment in the Florida State community and eventually dropped out. Winston was not criminally charged, but there is controversy over various reported failures on the part of investigators to secure necessary testimony and evidence.
“Over the past two years, this survivor of sexual violence has had to endure a delinquent police investigation, a hostile FSU athletic department, and Mr. Winston's bullying lawyer,” read a statement by Kinsman’s attorney, John Clune. “But the more these forces sought to silence her, the more determined she has become to step forward and hold Jameis Winston accountable for his actions.”
Kinsman told her story in a documentary about rape on college campuses, “The Hunting Ground.” Winston initiated sexual intercourse in his bedroom, but a roommate entered and told him to stop after noticing Kinsman was resisting, she said. Winston then took her into the bathroom, locked the door and forcibly raped her, she said.
Kinsman filed a civil suit against the Florida State University Board of Trustees the same day Winston announced he would enter the NFL draft in January. She alleged the school swept the incident under the rug to keep Winston out on the football field, delaying an investigation until last year. That complaint also mentioned another, anonymous woman who accused Winston of rape.
Winston’s lawyer has not yet responded to the civil suit. Winston, who won the Heisman Trophy in 2013, is expected to be a top, if not No. 1, pick in the NFL Draft on April 30.