On a night before the Oregon State Beavers played the University of Texas in the Alamo Bowl, two longhorn players went out drinking. At a bar, they met a young woman who eventually invited them back to her hotel room. That was either a sign that the young lady was interested in a night of romance, or a very bad judgment call by a likely impaired young woman who did not realize what she was doing. Early the next morning, she reported to the San Antonio police that she had been sexually assaulted, and did have bruising on her body. Some say the scenario appears to be an obvious “set up” job on athletes, perhaps another Duke University lacrosse-team episode, while others are outraged that an invitation to one’s hotel room could so easily be taken as a sign of consent.
What the case probably comes down to, however, is Texas “consent” law. That is, we all know that an adult has to consent to sexual activity for that activity to be valid. In a night filled with intoxication, young hormones, college athletics and things that come with it, things may appear complicated. While it is always ideal to get a verbal, express consent to sexual activity, the case law has defined what is NOT consent to sexual activity, and it is not limited to the word “no.”
If you or someone you know is being investigated or prosecuted for a crime, call Board Certified Criminal Law Specialist Micah Belden at 903-744-4252.