Defense attorneys seek mistrial in Vanderbilt rape case

Monday June 15th, 2015

The defense attorneys for two former Vanderbilt football players who were convicted of rape in January want the verdict thrown out and for a judge to order a new trial, according to the Associated Press. 

The attorneys for Brandon Vandenburg and Cory Batey motioned for a judge to declare a mistrial because the foreman of the 12-person jury did not disclose that he was the victim in a statutory rape case 15 years ago. 

The 31-year-old juror testified during a hearing Monday that he had a consensual relationship with an older man when he was 16 and did not consider himself to be a victim, although the other man was convicted of rape in 2000. The juror called the relationship "inconsequential," according to The Tennessean​, and said he hadn't thought of it until after the trial. 

LUTHER: The complex Vanderbilt rape case that left a community reeling

Defense attorneys questioned how the juror could have simply forgotten the incident while being questioned during jury selection. They argue that he intentionally withheld the information.

Batey and Vandenburg are accused of raping an unconscious female student in a Vanderbilt dorm room in June 2013. They were convicted on all charges in January after a 12-day trial. Batey was found guilty on five charges of aggravated rape and two charges of aggravated sexual battery, while Vandenburg was found guilty of the same plus charges tampering of evidence and unlawful photography. Two other former players also face charges in the case but have not yet been tried.

- Dan Gartland

SI Apps
We've Got Apps Too
Get expert analysis, unrivaled access, and the award-winning storytelling only SI can provide — from Peter King, Tom Verducci, Lee Jenkins, Grant Wahl, Andy Staples and more — delivered straight to you, along with up-to-the-minute news and live scores.