Callaway’s lawyer responds to ESPN report
Published on Friday, 8/5/16, at 1:35 p.m. Eastern.
ESPN reported Friday that the woman accusing Florida football players Antonio Callaway and Treon Harris of sexual assault in December will not appear at today’s Title IX hearing because UF has appointed a football booster to adjudicate the case.
The woman’s attorney is John Clune of Boulder, Colorado, who also represented the accuser of Jameis Winston two years ago.
In a letter sent by Clune Friday to UF deputy general counsel Amy Hass that was obtained by ESPN, Clune said, “This has been a difficult decision but as I previously indicated to you, the fact that UF has hired a football booster to adjudicate a sexual assault allegation against one of the team’s own football players is a fundamentally skewed process in which [the complainant] refuses to participate.
“To be clear, [the complainant] remains very willing to participate in a fair and unbiased disciplinary process. Mr. Calloway’s behavior has had a great impact on her life and continuing as a student at UF is of great importance to her and her future.”
Callaway was indefinitely suspended from the team in January, but he has recently been allowed to participate in team activities and is back in school. However, he hasn’t been fully reinstated and whether or not he’ll be able to play in the season opener vs. UMass remains a question mark.
Harris recently decided to transfer.
Callaway enjoyed a breakout freshman campaign in 2015, catching the game-winning TD pass on a fourth-and-14 play in a thrilling comeback win over Tennessee at The Swamp. He had electrifying punt returns for touchdowns at LSU and vs. Alabama at the SEC Championship Game in Atlanta.
He led the Gators in receiving yards (678), accounted for seven TDs and produced 1,213 all-purpose yards.
Callaway’s lawyer Huntley Johnson fired back after ESPN’s report was released.
“We have read what the complainant’s attorney has released to the press. We consider his actions inappropriate and an attempt at intimidation,” Johnson wrote.
“Since the complainant’s attorney has chosen to go to the press in this matter, we assume that he will be releasing the hundreds of pages that made up the University of Florida’s investigation. We assume that he will be releasing the sworn affidavits in this case. We assume that he will be releasing the complainant’s text messages in the investigation. We assume that he will be releasing the complainant’s multitude of varying and conflicting stories.
“We are not going to besmirch his client in the press. The totality of the investigation which is over one-thousand (1,000 pages) will do that for us. Our client has asked us not to release anything at this point. Because of the conduct of the complainant’s attorney, that may change in the future.”