CLEVELAND (AP) – A civil jury has discovered a lady responsible for malicious prosecution in a rape allegation she made in opposition to a former Ohio State soccer standout greater than 5 years in the past, Cleveland.com reported.

The accusation in opposition to Gareon Conley got here shortly earlier than the 2017 NFL draft, through which he had been projected to be a excessive first-round decide. The 23-year-old lady alleged that he had sexually assaulted her in a Cleveland lodge room. Conley’s lawyer mentioned the intercourse was consensual.

A grand jury in Cleveland declined to indict Conley on any of the doable expenses in keeping with the Cuyahoga County prosecutor’s workplace, and he signed a four-year contract with the Oakland Raiders, who made him the twenty fourth general decide. The lady filed a lawsuit a yr later, accusing him of assault, battery and intentional infliction of emotional misery. Conley sued her in a counterclaim, accusing her of malicious prosecution.

Cleveland.com studies that jurors sided with Conley after a 10-day trial in Cuyahoga County Widespread Pleas Courtroom, discovering that the lady had failed to indicate that he had assaulted her. Jurors ordered her to pay him $300, together with $100 in punitive damages, in addition to lawyer’s charges. A message looking for remark was despatched to her lawyer.

Conley’s lawyer, John Camillus, introduced testimony from a former NFL normal supervisor that the accusations price him a better draft choice and certain shaved greater than $2 million off his rookie contract, however Conley solely requested jurors to award him $300.

“It was by no means concerning the cash. It was all the time about clearing his title and restoring his popularity,” Camillus mentioned.

Conley, presently a free agent whereas rehabbing from a 2020 harm, mentioned in a press release on social media Monday that “after 5 1/2 lengthy years” he was “grateful and relieved to lastly be absolutely exonerated.”

The Raiders traded Conley after the 2019 season to the Houston Texans, who launched him after he spent the whole 2020 season on the injured reserve listing with an ankle harm that required surgical procedure, Cleveland.com reported. Camillus mentioned his shopper intends to return to the NFL.

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