Archive for Friday, July 11, 2008

DA decides not to file charges against Sherron Collins

The District Attorney says his office does not have enough evidence to file criminal charges against a KU basketball player for an alleged incident at Jayhawker Towers last year.

July 11, 2008, 5:07 p.m. Updated July 11, 2008, 6:47 p.m.


Douglas County District Attorney Charles Branson declined to file criminal charges against Kansas University basketball player Sherron M. Collins on Friday, based on insufficient evidence.

Jessica Brown, 35, has filed a civil lawsuit against Collins, 21, in reference to an incident reported to have occurred at the Jayhawker Towers on the Kansas University campus.

In the lawsuit, Brown accused Collins of exposing himself and rubbing against her despite being told repeatedly to stop. She said the incident occurred May 18, 2007, in an elevator at Jayhawker Towers, where she worked.

Collins has denied the allegations.

Brown won a default judgment in the civil case, because Collins did not respond to her lawsuit. Collins has filed a motion to have the default judgment set aside on the ground that he did not have proper notice of the lawsuit. Douglas County District Judge Jack Murphy is scheduled to hear that motion and others on Aug. 1.

Branson's decision to not file criminal charges does not affect the civil case.

"Based on the investigation done by KU Public Safety, the lab reports that we requested from KBI (Kansas Bureau of Investigation), we thought there was insufficient evidence that we could file a case that we could prove beyond a reasonable doubt," Branson said late Friday.

The burden of proof in a civil case is lower: preponderance of the evidence rather than "beyond a reasonable doubt."

Case more than year old

The incident was reported to KU police in May 2007. The Public Safety Office investigated the matter by conducting interviews and collecting potential evidence to corroborate the report, according to Branson's office.

Evidence was sent to KBI for testing. KBI returned one of the two tests requested in June 2007. The second, more sensitive test, was not performed "because of a low probability of success," according to a news release from Branson's office.

At Branson's request, the second test was conducted in October 2007. Those results were provided to Branson's office last month. According to the release, the testing "did not provide any additional evidence in the case."

"I think KU did a prompt job of investigating the matter," Branson said. "We had a time drag with KBI, but it's not unusual in those kind of circumstances."

Branson did not specify what items KBI tested.

Branson said he had spoken with Brown in May 2007 and last week about the case.

"The victim was very disappointed that the testing did not provide the corroborating evidence that would support a criminal charge and she understands the difficulty of pursuing a criminal case under these circumstances," Branson said.

The statute of limitations on the criminal case is five years.

Brown's attorney Jim Wisler could not be reached for comment Friday evening.

Collins' response

Collins maintained his innocence after hearing of Branson's decision.

"Although these claims have been very hurtful to me personally and damaged my reputation, I have always been confident that there is no evidence that could implicate me in any way, shape or form," said Collins in a statement released by KU. "I am innocent of any inappropriate behavior and hopefully this news today will help return my good name."

KU also released the following statement from head KU basketball coach Bill Self:

"This information comes as no surprise to me. Sherron has maintained his innocence since the day these allegations were made over a year ago. I have supported Sherron since these claims were made and will continue to do so."

Staff writer Dugan Arnett contributed to this story.


jaywalker 9 years, 9 months ago

Jonas and thebcman, thank you! You made me laugh out loud.

dozer 9 years, 9 months ago

Thank you Ragingbear. Your (note spelling) illogical and poorly spelled post is a first class demonstration to readers that Lawrence is not as well educated as many residents would like to believe. Sigh, if Marion joined in on this thread we could complete the circle of life.

somebodynew 9 years, 9 months ago

Some of you people need to realize this is NOT over. There will be no criminal charges filed, but that does nothing for the civil suit she filed.He still has to fight that battle and believe me it will be very public as it goes forward. That is if the summary judgement is reversed and it actually goes to trial.One does not wipe out the other, the civil case still proceeds.

jonas 9 years, 9 months ago

Pick your biased stance and start defending it, I guess. I think he's guilty as sin, unless of course he isn't, in which case she's a lying @#$%, unless of course she isn't, in which case he's guilty. . . .

mom_of_three 9 years, 9 months ago

somebodynew,We know it isn't over, as we can read. we were commenting on the criminal case, which the article is about.

kujayhawk 9 years, 9 months ago

Funny how people assume he did it and isn't being prosecuted just because he's an athlete. I'd say your argument would be stronger if he was found not guilty rather than not even being prosecuted due to the lack of evidence.

Daytrader23 9 years, 9 months ago

I ain't saying she a gold digger.............

jaywalker 9 years, 9 months ago

RagingBore says:"Once again, we see that if your famous enough, you can get by with anything."Once again we see that if you're dumb enough you can post idiocy on-line. Nobody knows if this actually happened or not. It's he said, she said. The DA requested testing be done, the testing came back negative or inconclusive, so there is NO case. Thank God we live in a country where, more often than not, unsubstantiated allegations can't be used to prosecute you.Maybe Sherron did do this and if so shame on him. But there is no proof, IgnorantBear, unless you're clairvoyant. And judging by your use of punctuation and inability to choose correctly between 'your' and 'you are' (you're), I'm betting you don't possess the mental capacity for such advanced brain power.

riverdrifter 9 years, 9 months ago

Nobody knows what happened here but it's nonetheless an excellent life lesson for Sherron. A year from now when he's playing in the NBA and pulling down, say, $60-75,000 per week: watch your every move, trust no one you don't truly know and save your money, no matter what. All glory, like money, is fleeting.

DRsmith 9 years, 9 months ago

I wasn't aware Sherron was getting paid. Insufficient evidence = no clear video of the incident and the pope did not witness it to testify.

tangential_reasoners_anonymous 9 years, 9 months ago

"Brown accused Collins of exposing himself and rubbing against her despite being told repeatedly to stop."Maybe he was just closely guarding his opponent.

Brandi Simpson-Glover 9 years, 9 months ago

it seems as though some people try to use somebody's "wellknowness" to get $. only her and Sherron know the truth but Sherron probably has many girls falling for him and I'm sure he has no reason to resort to a woman her age.......hopefully if he was guilty he would fess up and apologize. a lesson learned!

mom_of_three 9 years, 9 months ago

So that is why she pursued a civil case, because she knew the chances of the DA being able to charge Collins was slim and nil. So the truth may never come out.

FormerCentralKansan 9 years, 9 months ago

Oh well! 2008 National Champs in men's basketball!

mom_of_three 9 years, 9 months ago

C'mon Bear,There isn't evidence to support the case, so there is no way to tell who is telling the truth. It doesn't mean Collins got away with anything. But there isn't evidence to back up her claim, which must be frustrating for a victim. But we don't know who is telling the truth yet, the accuser or the accused.

Ragingbear 9 years, 9 months ago

Once again, we see that if your famous enough, you can get by with anything.

dweezil222 9 years, 9 months ago

Now it's even more important to actually have something substantial determined by the civil suit, rather than a rubber-stamp based on a technicality.

chapdaddy 9 years, 9 months ago

....and now back to your regularly scheduled basketball season. Move on.

iLikelawrence 9 years, 9 months ago

Do famous/semi famous people get out of charges just like cops/former cops always get out of speeding tickets?

Chris Ogle 9 years, 9 months ago

sure is sad that sports make the world go round....

yellowhouse 9 years, 9 months ago

But wait, he better not celebrate yet! Because now the Chief can now call on his buddies at the Federal building that owe him a favor to take the case since the DA here in town wont touch it...That is what happened with the Yellow House case!

davidsmom 9 years, 9 months ago

Collins didn't "get away with" anything. He didn't pay the KBI and he is innocent until proven guilty. The accuser has made an accusation. That's all it is - an accusation. Ragingbear needs an education.

Stephen Roberts 9 years, 9 months ago

There is a big difference is between proving something in a criminal versus civil case. Beyond a reasonable doubt is a lot harder to prove.

oldvet 9 years, 9 months ago

If da stains on dem clothes don't show...You gots to let him go...

kujayhawk 9 years, 9 months ago

OJ was found not guilty by a racist jury. There wasn't enough evidence to prosecute Collins. Big difference.

1wetwilly 9 years, 9 months ago

The NBA should be allowed to draft inmates from state and federal prisons. It would supply the NBA with the same character types as drafting college players, reduce prison over-crowding and lower the tax burden of maintaining prisoners.

Kent Fisher 9 years, 9 months ago

EVERY single KU athlete is aware of Collin's, Rush's, Talib's, Gile's, etc. situations and lack of responsibilities. However, we all know that this will happen again by another athlete. Therefore, I ask you all, would you feel so forgiving of our beloved athletes if this was one of your kids? I mean, they've been counseled on expected behavior by the university, and should know better. Yet, mark my words, this same type of story will occur again this fall/winter, only the names will change. Give me a break and "man-up!" You guys will be right back here defending their actions. Let's face it...if somebody is involved in a legal matter, it's usually because they put themselves in a situation they could have avoided (innocent or not). Yes, I realize the need for political correctness, and for assuming innocence...but come on...aren't we KU fans sick of this?

Stephen Roberts 9 years, 9 months ago

Panhandle- first of all, I am not a lawyer but double jeopardy can only happen in a criminal case. Civil cases are meant for restitution and the proof of guilty is less than in the criminal case.Does anyone know if Branson is a basketball season ticket holder?One problem of the whole situation is electing a DA. Are they really there to serve the public interests or get re-elected, or both? What happens when they conflict? Only the Assistant DAs and the DA will know the whole truth.

Kent Fisher 9 years, 9 months ago

panhandle2: aren't you familiar with Orrenthal James Simpson?

yellowhouse 9 years, 9 months ago

Lucky him, guess he did not piss off the cops and police Chief like the Yellow House did!

John McCoy 9 years, 9 months ago

Civil cases like this constitute double jeopardy. If a person is not guilty in the eyes of the law, he should be not guilty of all charges in an incident, including not guilty in any civil action.

jonas 9 years, 9 months ago

Defender: Have you read his profile? Par for the course.

Thats_messed_up 9 years, 9 months ago

Collins is not being charged because he didn't have time to finish on her- simple as that. It's easy to proclaim your innocence when you know there's no liquid evidence!

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