DURHAM, N.C. A Duke University lacrosse team captain became the third player indicted in the rape scandal Monday and the first to speak out, blasting the charges against him as "fantastic lies."
"I look forward to watching them unravel in the weeks to come," said the suspect, a just-graduated 23-year-old economics major from Bethesda, Md., who was one of four team captains.
At a news conference, the player was backed by teammates and his mother, a Washington lobbyist who is the chairwoman of the Ladies Professional Golf Assn. board of directors.
The charges followed a March 13 party at an off-campus house, where a 27-year-old black student at nearby North Carolina Central University told police she was raped and beaten by three white men after she and another woman were hired as strippers.
The suspect also proclaimed the innocence of two sophomore teammates who were indicted last month on the same charges.
District Attorney Mike Nifong said he did not expect any more indictments in the case, saying the three players facing charges were the only ones implicated by the evidence.
Defense attorneys have insisted all the players are innocent, citing DNA tests they say found no conclusive match between any of the team's white players and the accuser.