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Aug 7 09 10:21 PM
KATHLEEN STINSON, NEWS-PRESS STAFF WRITER
December 18, 2007 7:20 AM
A Santa Barbara Superior Court jury found former UCSB soccer player Eric Frimpong guilty of forcibly raping a
UCSB student in February and not guilty of sexual battery against another female student in connection with a separate incident in January.
Mr. Frimpong faces a maximum sentence of eight years in prison.
The jury of nine women and three men had deliberated briefly on Friday after getting the case. They resumed
deliberations on Monday morning and returned their verdict in the afternoon.
As they deliberated on Monday, Mr. Frimpong and several of his supporters sat in the hall outside Courtroom 2
waiting for the verdict. After the verdict, one of Mr. Frimpong's supporters yelled hysterically as she walked out of the courthouse. Another of Mr.
Frimpong's supporters said they were not prepared for the verdict.
Closing arguments in the three-week-long trial concluded Friday afternoon. Jury instructions had been given the
Santa Barbara County Assistant District Attorney Patrick McKinley said the prosecutor in the case, Deputy
District Attorney Mary Barron, was not immediately available to comment because she was talking with the victim in the case.
Mr. Frimpong's attorney, Robert Sanger, did not return a call placed by the News-Press seeking
Aug 7 09 10:23 PM
December 15, 2007 7:36 AM
Closing arguments given in rape case Jury to resume deliberations on Monday in trial of former UCSB soccer
player The attorney defending a man accused of raping a UCSB student told jurors Friday that the alleged victim's memory could not be trusted because she
imbibed large quantities of alcohol on the February night of the alleged attack.
The prosecution, meanwhile, said the woman's memory included details both of the night's events and of
her alleged attacker.
Once closing arguments were completed, the jury began deliberations. They adjourned without reaching a verdict
and will resume deliberations on Monday morning.
Eric Frimpong, a former UCSB soccer player, is charged with one count of rape against the female student and one
count of sexual battery against another female student in connection with an incident in January.
Courtroom 2 of Santa Barbara Superior Court was packed Friday morning for the start of closing arguments. The
alleged victim returned to the courtroom for the first time since her testimony. She sat quietly together with a few friends.
On the opposite side of the aisle sat several of Mr. Frimpong's supporters.
Judges, deputy district attorneys and other courthouse staff sat scattered around the courtroom as
"It is a complicated case," said Robert Sanger, Mr. Frimpong's attorney, who on Thursday surprised
everyone by resting the defense case after the brief testimony of one witness.
Deputy District Attorney Mary Barron, who prosecuted the case, portrayed the alleged rape victim as someone who
described her attacker clearly and in detail.
She said the alleged victim knew the area in which her attacker's house was located, his physical
characteristics, his accent. She was able to identify him in a photo lineup as well as on an audio recording of his voice, Ms. Barron said.
"(The alleged rape victim) described her attacker in painstaking detail," she argued. "She may
have had a lot to drink, but the punishment should not be rape."
Mr. Sanger described the alleged victim as a person who "unfortunately" was really into partying and
He said the alleged victim's memory of events begins to "break up" after the "beer pong"
game she played with the defendant late on the night of Feb. 16 or in the early morning hours of Feb. 17.
He said her testimony is detailed up to that point, but after that it becomes simply, "I was
attacked." He said she doesn't remember being in the park after the game or walking down the steps to the beach. She doesn't remember details,
because she was blacked out from alcohol.
"With that much alcohol, it's just preposterous to think she wouldn't have blacked out," Mr.
Sanger said, adding there is no evidence of where she went after leaving Mr. Frimpong's house.
Mr. Sanger explained why the defense did not call more witnesses on its behalf.
"This case is a mess . . . there are a lot of 'ifs' and 'coulds' and 'maybes,'
" he said. "You can't convict the defendant on 'ifs' and 'maybes.' That's why we rested. The case doesn't make any
Early in the investigation, it became a "competitive enterprise" to prove Mr. Frimpong committed the
crime, he said.
"The focus of the (Santa Barbara County) Sheriff's Department was on a black person named
'Eric' (the alleged victim) had played beer pong with," he said.
He also pointed to what he called a number of "irregularities" and "problems" in the case
having to do with record keeping and chain of custody of the evidence that came out during testimony.
"You can't trust this evidence for an abiding conviction," he said.
By contrast, Ms. Barron's closing focused on taking the jury back through the many witnesses she had called
She also referred to the cell-phone records of the alleged victim and Mr. Frimpong.
"With the cell phone records, you should be able to make a timeline of what happened that night," she
"There are two victims in the case and both have striking similarities," Ms. Barron said. "Both
are 19 years old, young, freshman UCSB students who were out late at night drinking. Both were befriended by the defendant and went down with him to the beach
at the same access point."
Halfway through the prosecution's closing argument, Mr. Sanger made a motion for a new trial. He said a
comment Ms. Barron made in her closing argument was a direct reference to the defendant's right to remain silent and not testify.
After commenting about Mr. Frimpong's alibi, Ms. Barron said, "He has now had 10 months to think about
Superior Court Judge Brian Hill said, "I agree it's a possible inference -- the question is, is it of
such a magnitude to stop the trial."
The judge said making any reference, direct or indirect, to the defendant's right not to testify violates
Ultimately though, Judge Hill denied the motion, arguing a special instruction to the jury would cure any
possible prejudice to the defendant's case.
Aug 7 09 10:25 PM
December 14, 2007 7:32 AM
The defense in the case of a man charged with raping a UCSB student rested its case Thursday after calling one
witness, a criminalist with the California Department of Justice, who was subpoenaed to testify about estimates of the blood alcohol level of the alleged rape
victim the night of the alleged attack.
Eric Frimpong, a former UCSB soccer player, is charged with one count of rape against a UCSB student in
connection with an incident in February and one count of sexual battery against another female student in connection with a separate incident in
The criminalist's brief testimony was heard late Wednesday. Dean Warden testified that he estimates a female
the size of the alleged victim who consumed 13 drinks over a seven-hour period -- as the alleged victim testified she did on the night she was allegedly raped
-- would have a .34 percent blood alcohol level.
The number takes into consideration a so-called burn-off rate, or rate by which a person sobers up over
Jurors returned Thursday to hear the defense's case, filing into the courtroom about 2:30 p.m.
Mr. Frimpong's attorney, Robert Sanger, quickly stated that the defense rested its case.
In the hushed courtroom, Superior Court Judge Brian Hill then began to read the jury instructions.
Mr. Frimpong remained quiet, maintaining the composure he had displayed throughout the three-week-long
Every day of the trial, a group of several of Mr. Frimpong's supporters sat listening to the testimony, and
they stayed to hear the instructions.
At the start of the trial, one of Mr. Frimpong's friends testified briefly, describing Mr. Frimpong as a
In a tape recording of the defendant's initial interview with law enforcement -- barely intelligible at
times -- Mr. Frimpong could be heard telling the sheriff's deputy that he came to UCSB from the African country of Ghana to play soccer. Mr. Frimpong was a
member of the UCSB team that won the NCAA championship in 2006. He graduated from UCSB last summer.
Closing arguments begin at 9:30 this morning in Courtroom 2.
Aug 7 09 10:27 PM
December 13, 2007 8:00 AM
The prosecution in the case of a man charged with raping a UCSB student dodged sanctions Wednesday for one
allegation of misconduct only to find itself sharply criticized by the judge for failing to disclose their fee arrangement with the dental expert they hired to
examine evidence and testify in the case.
Eric Frimpong, a former UCSB soccer player, is charged with one count of rape against the woman in connection
with an incident in February and one count of sexual battery against another female student in connection with a separate incident in January.
Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Department detectives testified Tuesday that they decided not to use as an
expert witness, Dr. Raymond Johansen, because he wanted to charge between $2,400-$2,800, and Dr. Norman Sperber, the dentist the prosecution ultimately
retained, does not charge law enforcement.
However, it was later disclosed that Dr. Sperber charges everyone, including law enforcement, for his services
as an expert witness.
Mr. Frimpong's dental bite is an issue because the alleged rape victim has testified that her attacker bit
her during the course of the alleged attack.
Although Superior Court Judge Brian Hill on Wednesday refused to impose sanctions against the prosecution for
not disclosing to the defense the fact that they had first spoken with Dr. Johansen about the bite mark evidence, he expressed concern over the failure to
disclose the fact that Dr. Sperber does indeed charge law enforcement for his services.
"The court has some concern -- this information should have been turned over well before trial," said
On Tuesday, Mr. Frimpong's attorney, Robert Sanger, made a motion for a new trial because prosecutors failed
to disclose their initial contact with Dr. Johansen. Mr. Sanger said law enforcement failed to share with him the opinion of Dr. Johansen, potentially
favorable to the defense.
He said the evidence could have been used to impeach the testimony of Dr. Sperber.
Sheriff's department investigators first contacted Dr. Johansen, a Santa Barbara dentist, about four months
ago to provide expert bite mark comparisons between the alleged victim's bite mark and Mr. Frimpong's teeth.
During an evidentiary hearing Wednesday morning outside the presence of the jury, Dr. Johansen testified he
examined photos of the bite mark and Mr. Frimpong's teeth, and that the "best" he could conclude was that he could not exclude Mr. Frimpong as
having made the bite mark.
After hearing the testimony, the judge ruled Dr. Johansen's preliminary opinion did not seem inconsistent
with Dr. Sperber's testimony. He said the opinion "has to have some impeachment value" in order to fall under the 1963 case of Brady V. Maryland,
which outlines the government's constitutional obligation to disclose exculpatory evidence to the defense.
However, in the afternoon, during Mr. Sanger's cross-examination of Dr. Sperber, it was revealed that the
dentist charges everyone, law enforcement included, for his services. He said he does not charge for a preliminary examination.
"(Although this) is a cursory comparison by Johansen and not really inconsistent with Dr. Sperber's
testimony, it should have been turned over to the defense," Judge Hill said later outside of the presence of the jury. "It turns out (Dr. Sperber is)
getting paid and we're all under a contrary impression."
Information such as what an expert is paid to render an opinion are legitimate questions for the defense, Judge
Although he took no further action, the judge said the information does raise some questions about why law
enforcement decided to hire Dr. Sperber and not Dr. Johansen.
Deputy District Attorney Mary Barron told the Court she had no knowledge of this.
When testimony before the jury resumed, Dr. Sperber testified about his comparison of the alleged victim's
bite mark in relation to Mr. Frimpong's teeth. He said he could not rule out Mr. Frimpong as having caused bite marks found on the alleged victim's
cheek and buttock.
On cross-examination, Mr. Sanger asked Dr. Sperber if not ruling a person out is the same as an
"inconclusive" opinion in professional dentistry lexicon.
Dr. Sperber said it was.
The prosecution completed presentation of its case late in the day and the defense called its first witness,
Dean Warden, a criminalist with the California Department of Justice.
Mr. Warden testified he estimates a female the size of the alleged victim who consumed 13 drinks over a seven
hour period -- as the alleged victim testified she consumed the night she was allegedly raped -- would have a .34 percent blood alcohol level. This number
takes into consideration a so-called burn off rate or rate by which a person sobers up over time.
Testimony in the case resumes today at 2 p.m.
Aug 7 09 10:28 PM
December 12, 2007 7:27 AM
The lawyer defending a former UCSB soccer player against a rape charge made a motion for a mistrial Tuesday,
alleging prosecutors withheld evidence that could have helped the defendant's case.
Eric Frimpong is charged with one count of rape against a UCSB student in connection with an incident in
February and one count of sexual battery related to a separate incident in January.
Mr. Frimpong's attorney, Robert Sanger, told the court outside the presence of the jury that his private
investigator had talked earlier Tuesday with Santa Barbara dentist Dr. Raymond Johansen, who said he spoke months ago with Santa Barbara County Sheriff's
Department detectives about a bite mark on the alleged victim when they were looking for a bite mark expert.
According to the investigator, the dentist told a detective the alleged victim's bite mark was
"vague," and that the arch of Mr. Frimpong's mouth was even; there was nothing unique about his teeth.
Santa Barbara County Deputy District Attorney Mary Barron was quick to tell the court she had no prior knowledge
of any opinion by Dr. Johansen.
The bite mark is an issue because the alleged victim has testified that her attacker bit her cheek during the
The prosecution had a mold of Mr. Frimpong's teeth made early in the investigation to compare the bite mark
on the alleged victim to the defendant's dental bite. Ms. Barron was about to call her dental expert when Mr. Sanger made the motion.
"There's absolutely no excuse that it was not turned over," said Superior Court Judge Brian
Judge Hill said law enforcement is obligated to turn over any evidence to the defense that does not point to the
defendant as the suspect. To intentionally suppress such evidence could be grounds for imposition of sanctions. He tentatively ruled not to allow the
prosecution's dental expert, Dr. Norman Sperber, to testify. In the meantime, the judge called Dr. Johansen to testify as to whether he told someone in the
sheriff's department his opinion about the bite mark. Dr. Johansen is scheduled to testify this morning at 8:15 a.m.
The judge is expected to rule on the motion for a mistrial after hearing the evidence.
If Dr. Sperber's testimony is allowed, he is expected to say that Mr. Frimpong has two protruding front
teeth, that his "dentician is consistent with aspects" of the bite mark found on the victim, and that he cannot rule out Mr. Frimpong as having made
Dr. Sperber testified Friday in an evidentiary hearing outside the presence of the jury.
Both Detective Danny Kies and Sgt. Greg Weitzman of the sheriff's department testified Tuesday that they did
not discuss any opinion with Dr. Johansen.
In other testimony heard Tuesday, Detective Kies said in his initial interview with Mr. Frimpong the defendant
did not describe meeting a young woman who grabbed his genitals on the night in question. Mr. Frimpong told him he played beer pong with a young woman whose
description Detective Kies said did not match the description of the alleged victim.
Also testifying Tuesday was Yesenia Prieto, Mr. Frimpong's girlfriend.
Ms. Prieto testified that Mr. Frimpong came to her house about 3:30 a.m. the morning of Feb. 17 and that he
"seemed a bit dazed; confused a bit."
Prosecutors say the alleged attack occurred late Feb. 16 or early Feb. 17.
She said Mr. Frimpong told her he thought someone put something in a drink he had at some party that night and
that he might have been drugged. He told her he fell asleep at a friend's house earlier that night.
She said the two of them went to sleep after the conversation.
The trial resumes today in Courtroom 2 of Santa Barbara Superior Court.
Aug 7 09 10:30 PM
December 11, 2007 8:11 AM
A swab taken from the genitals of a former UCSB soccer player accused of raping a female student in February
contained the alleged victim's DNA, a criminalist with the California Department of Justice testified Monday.
Lillian Tugado, state Department of Justice DNA lab criminalist, testified that no foreign DNA was found on the
alleged victim's vaginal swabs, but that the alleged victim's DNA was found on defendant Eric Frimpong's penile swab.
Ms. Tugado also said Mr. Frimpong's scrotal swab contained a mixture of his own DNA, as well as that of a
female and a third person whose levels were too low to read.
She concluded that the alleged victim could not be excluded from the sample as a contributor.
She also testified that the semen found on the alleged victim's panties did not match Mr. Frimpong. Instead,
the DNA matched Benjamin Randall, a friend with whom the alleged victim has said she was having an intimate relationship.
Ms. Tugado also testified as to the DNA on a fingernail swab taken from Mr. Frimpong.
After subtracting out Mr. Frimpong's DNA profile, she found the alleged victim could not be excluded as a
Using probability tables, she said there is strong evidence that the alleged victim was the source of female DNA
in the fingernail swab.
In his opening statement, Mr. Frimpong's attorney, Robert Sanger, said that shortly before the alleged
victim and Mr. Frimpong separated that evening, Mr. Frimpong told the alleged victim he wanted nothing to do with her.
According to Mr. Sanger, the alleged victim then reached down into Mr. Frimpong's pants and grabbed his
genitals. Mr. Frimpong then left her, he said.
During cross-examination, Mr. Sanger asked how likely it was, if Mr. Randall had intercourse with the alleged
victim four to seven days prior to the incident, that the semen could still be excreted from her onto her panties the day of the incident.
"I can't state how likely it is -- only that it can occur," Ms. Tugado said.
She said it depends on how far up in the woman's vagina the semen was deposited or whether the woman had
shed cells during her menstrual cycle. Some women retain fluid more than others, she said.
Deputy District Attorney Mary Barron asked the witness how likely it was that 13 hours later, when the testing
was performed, DNA could be detected if casual touching was the source.
Ms. Tugado said it was less likely if the DNA was from touching and more likely if the source of the DNA was a
Mr. Sanger suggested it was also possible for DNA to be transferred from saliva, for example if a person was
smoking, or from mucus from the touching of a runny nose.
He also questioned the witness as to possible mishandling of the DNA samples.
The witness admitted there were some errors in the recording of the chain of custody that later had to be
Mr. Frimpong is charged with one count of rape against the UCSB student and one count of sexual battery against
another female student in connection with a separate incident in January.
Aug 7 09 10:31 PM
December 8, 2007 8:03 AM
A prosecution dental expert in the Eric Frimpong trial testified during an evidentiary hearing Friday that he is
absolutely certain the alleged victim's friend could not have made the bite marks left on the accuser's face.
The alleged victim has testified that the person who raped her bit her face during the attack.
Mr. Frimpong, a former UCSB soccer player, is charged with one count of rape against the female UCSB student in
connection with an incident in February and one count of sexual battery against another female student in connection with a separate incident in
The dental expert, Dr. Norman Sperber, testified outside the presence of the jury as Santa Barbara Superior
Court Judge Brian Hill tried to determine if the testimony was properly admissible.
Deputy District Attorney Mary Barron asked Dr. Sperber if there is any way the alleged victim's friend
Benjamin Randall, with whom she has said she has had intimate relations, could have made the bite marks. Dr. Sperber examined Mr. Randall's dental
impression, or mold, as well as the photo of the alleged victim's bite mark to make comparisons.
"I absolutely rule him out with certainty," Dr. Sperber testified.
He also studied Mr. Frimpong's dental mold in relation to the alleged victim's bite mark. Dr. Sperber
said he "could not rule out Mr. Frimpong as having made the bite. However, 90 percent of cases have a better bite (mark to study) than
He said Mr. Frimpong's upper two front teeth protrude and also are more directly side-by-side than curved
together. Also, his lower front teeth have a "ditching" or are not straight across on top. He concluded that Mr. Frimpong's bite is
"consistent with aspects" of the bite marks.
Judge Hill ruled the expert's testimony will be admissible. It is expected to be presented to the jury on
The other witness to testify Friday was Dianne Burns, a criminalist with the California Department of Justice.
Ms. Burns examined the alleged victim's underwear for sperm and other DNA evidence.
She said no sperm could be found on the alleged victim's vaginal swabs. She went on to explain that, in some
sexual assault cases, no sperm is found for a variety of reasons, such as the act of penetration without ejaculation, ejaculation before penetration, or the
use of a condom.
However, she testified that the alleged victim's underwear did contain sperm and that the DNA did not match
that of the suspect. Sperm can remain on a fabric after the underwear is washed, she added.
She also tested Mr. Frimpong's penile and scrotal swabs provided by the Sexual Assault Response Team
specialist. Ms. Burns said one nucleated cell was found on each swab, which was sent to the DNA laboratory. She performed an iodine test on the swabs for
vaginal cells, which was negative but not conclusive.
The witness also examined Mr. Frimpong's jeans which, she said, had some sand in the pockets and
The trial resumes Monday at 10 a.m. in Courtroom 2.
Aug 7 09 10:32 PM
December 7, 2007 7:31 AM
Attorneys in the Eric Frimpong case argued Thursday over whether a dental expert should be allowed to testify
Mr. Frimpong, a former UCSB soccer player, is charged with one count of rape against a UCSB student in
connection with an alleged incident in February and one count of sexual battery against another female student in connection with a separate alleged incident
The dental expert is important as a witness to Deputy District Attorney Mary Barron's case, she said,
because it will eliminate the alleged victim's friend, Benjamin Randall, as a suspect. Mr. Frimpong's attorney, Robert Sanger, has more than once said
while questioning witnesses, that Mr. Randall's semen was found in the alleged victim's underwear the night the alleged rape took place.
The debate over the dental expert was taken up in a sidebar outside the presence of jurors.
The dental impressions are at issue because the alleged victim claims her attacker bit her on the
Ms. Barron's expert has taken a dental impression of both Mr. Randall's and Mr. Frimpong's bites.
The expert, she said, will testify Mr. Randall is not a match.
"I have not even seen the dental impression," Mr. Sanger said. He said to "steamroll" the
testimony into evidence without giving the defense more time to consult with its own expert is "absolutely unfair."
"I've had this case for some time and I didn't know what was going to be your defense," said
Superior Court Judge Brian Hill, referring to the defense's suggestion that Mr. Randall is a potential suspect.
"It should be obvious Randall was a potential suspect. I don't know who did it," Mr. Sanger said.
"If it was not Randall, good for him. Someone did it and I believe my client did not."
Both Mr. Randall and the alleged victim have testified they did not have intercourse the night of the alleged
rape, but a few days earlier.
Directing his comments to Mr. Sanger, Judge Hill said, "If you think you need some time to consult with
your expert," there will be time first to question Ms. Barron's witness at the 402 hearing Friday.
A 402 hearing refers to a section in the California Evidence Code which allows an evidentiary hearing to be
conducted outside the presence of the jury.
Other testimony heard Thursday was that of nurse Judy Malmgren as well as that of an expert witness who said the
alleged victim's urine sample taken after the incident contained no illegal drugs other than marijuana. The alleged victim has said she did not use
marijuana on the day of the incident.
The 402 hearing begins at 9:30 a.m. today in Courtroom 2 in Santa Barbara Superior Court.
Aug 7 09 10:34 PM
December 6, 2007 7:34 AM
The forensic nurse who examined the alleged rape victim in the Eric Frimpong case testified Wednesday that the
patient had several injuries to her genital area and that her face was swollen.
The jury was shown diagrams and a video of the alleged victim's injuries over the initial objection of Mr.
Frimpong's attorney, Robert Sanger, who argued that presenting both to the jury was redundant and prejudicial.
Mr. Sanger said the defense concedes that some sort of assault took place on the February night in question, but
maintains Mr. Frimpong was not the attacker.
Mr. Frimpong, a former UCSB soccer player, is charged with one count of rape against the UCSB student and one
count of sexual battery against another female student in connection with a separate incident in January.
Sexual Assault Response Team nurse Judy Malmgren testified that the alleged victim had a bleeding tear or
laceration to her external genitalia, which appeared to be new or recent. Ms. Malmgren said she also saw redness and tenderness in two other locations in that
She testified the injuries could have been caused by blunt force from a penis or a finger. She also saw linear
marks on the alleged victim's thigh, which were consistent with grasping by fingers.
She told the jury she collected DNA swabs of the patient's vaginal area, neck, left thigh and the right side
of her face. She said she also collected sand debris from the alleged victim's genital area.
In the video, jurors were shown a close-up picture of the alleged victim's facial cheek and buttock. Two
sizeable swollen red marks were apparent on her cheek and one on her buttock.
The nurse also said she examined the alleged rape victim's neck. She said the patient's complaints of
pain and that it hurt to swallow were consistent with a strangulation-type injury.
The alleged victim's examination occurred early on Feb. 17, the morning of the alleged incident. About 4
p.m. that same day, she also examined Mr. Frimpong, taking DNA swabs of his finger and genital area.
Also testifying Wednesday was Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Detective Michael Scherbarth, who told the
court that earlier that day, when questioning Mr. Frimpong at his house, he was cooperative and consented to a search of his room and to the taking of DNA
He said he took Mr. Frimpong's jeans and shirt for DNA testing. No sand was on the clothes and they were not
torn, he said. He did not take the shoes into evidence.
"I don't know what happened to the shoes," the detective said in response to a question posed by
Mr. Sanger asked the detective about language used by fellow detective Danny Kies while interviewing the alleged
victim and her friends the morning of the incident.
He asked if Detective Kies used profanities to refer to Mr. Frimpong.
Detective Scherbarth said if it's in the transcript, it happened.
When pressed, Detective Scherbarth said he did not remember the exact quote, but he remembered the
Direct examination of Ms. Malmgren resumes today at 1:30 p.m. in Courtroom 2 of Santa Barbara Superior
Aug 7 09 10:35 PM
December 5, 2007 7:42 AM
Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Detective Michael Scherbarth testified in the Eric Frimpong trial on Tuesday
that he and another officer were able to locate and arrest the defendant using, in part, the alleged victim's description of the "beer pong"
table where the two played the night Mr. Frimpong was accused of rape.
Also taking the stand was the emergency room doctor who treated the alleged victim shortly after the incident.
Both the prosecutor, Mary Barron, and the defense attorney, Robert Sanger, questioned the doctor about the alleged victim's clarity of mind.
During cross-examination, Mr. Sanger stated that the alleged victim's blood alcohol level, tested directly
after her initial hospital examination, was .20. The legal limit in California is .08.
Mr. Frimpong, a former UCSB soccer player, is charged with one count of rape against a UCSB student and one
count of sexual battery against another female student in connection with a separate incident in January.
Detective Scherbarth testified that the alleged victim described her attacker as a black male, short and
muscular, who spoke with an accent and said his name was Eric. Also helpful in the search for Mr. Frimpong, he said, was the accuser's description of the
"beer pong" table she said had a wild design painted on it.
The detective said they started their search for the attacker by knocking on doors in the 6500 block of Del
Playa Drive in Isla Vista near where the alleged victim said she met the man who had attacked her.
"I noticed two white males and one black male playing Ping-Pong," Detective Scherbarth said. "We
walked by to see a 'beer pong' table that fit the description with a colorful wild design that looked like it was hand painted."
He said they contacted the black man, who said his name was Eric, and asked him to come to the sheriff's
station to discuss the allegation. He said Mr. Frimpong consented to a cheek swab for the purposes of DNA testing and to having an impression of his dental
bite because his accuser said he bit her on her face. A Sexual Assault Response Team officer then collected a DNA swab, a lower extremity hair sample and swabs
of his genitals and fingertips.
The other witness to testify Tuesday was Dr. Gregory Olsen, the emergency physician on duty at Goleta Valley
Hospital the night of the alleged incident.
On direct examination, Dr. Olsen testified that during the examination, the alleged victim complained of facial
pain and pain to her wrist, and that he noticed her cheek was swollen. He did not, however, observe a bite mark on her face. Ms. Barron then asked the doctor
if a bite mark could become more visible with the passage of time. "The tissue may become more defined with time," he responded.
Asked if the patient appeared to be intoxicated at the time of the examination, Dr. Olsen said her level of
responsiveness, gait and communication skills did not appear significantly impaired. He documented no loss of consciousness.
On cross-examination, the doctor said his statement relating to consciousness was based on the alleged
victim's statement to him; she told him she had not lost consciousness.
Dr. Olsen also testified he could not exclude the possibility that the patient might have blacked out that
night. However, he said she offered a "reasonable history of events" as she described them to have happened.
Asked how a .20 blood alcohol level can affect an individual's behavior, Dr. Olsen said it varies
tremendously from person to person. He said a tolerance for alcohol can allow an experienced drinker to appear to function, but that doesn't necessarily
mean the person has a clear mind.
Aug 7 09 10:38 PM
December 4, 2007 7:09 AM
On cross-examination during the Eric Frimpong trial on Monday, the alleged victim testified that when she
identified the defendant in a photo lineup, she was "pretty sure" it was him, and that she didn't remember anything at the hospital where she
went shortly after she alleged that a rape took place.
Defense counsel Robert Sanger took his time cross-examining the alleged victim, focusing on her memory and
history with alcohol.
On direct examination, she testified that at first she was reluctant to report what happened to her on the night
in question, Feb. 16, because she had been drinking and was on probation at the time. She said one condition of her probation was that she was not to drink any
alcohol. On cross-examination, she testified she was on probation for a DUI.
Mr. Sanger asked her if she had ever blacked out before from drinking alcohol. She said she had.
"How many times?" he asked. "More than 10 times? More than five?"
"More than five (times)."
"Your memory of what happened ended somewhere (after playing) beer pong (at Mr. Frimpong's house)
didn't it?" Mr. Sanger asked.
"It didn't end, but pieces began to disappear," she said, adding that she remembered what
happened, but not in the "exact chronology."
"So you don't remember at all being in that park near the defendant's house or reaching into his
pants or making out with him and his pushing you away?" Mr. Sanger asked.
"No," she said.
UCSB student Justin Hannah, who loaned the alleged victim his phone after the incident, testified that when he
saw her she had tears in her eyes and "looked like she had just come out of a traumatic experience. She looked shooken up . . . and she was
trembling," he said.
He testified that he heard her say over the phone that she was raped.
Deputy District Attorney Mary Barron allowed him to refresh his memory by reading his earlier statement to
sheriff's deputies, after he said he did not remember that her clothing looked anything but normal. Then he said he could not be absolutely sure that the
clothes she was wearing had any dirt or sand on them or appeared anything but normal. However, he said she was not wearing shoes or carrying a
Nikki Rubin, one of the young women who went with her to the hospital the night of the alleged rape, testified
that while in the car, the alleged victim said she was raped by an "African-American" man.
Ms. Rubin said she noticed one side of the alleged victim's face was "really swollen" and that she
said the man had hit her.
She testified that the alleged victim was "completely coherent" and not very intoxicated, but that she
Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Deputy Joel Rivlin testified about the report he took from the alleged victim
that night. He said he interviewed her before she was examined at the Sexual Assault Response Team cottage.
He said she appeared to be a person who had been severely traumatized.
"She was curled up in the (hospital) bed in a fetal position," Deputy Rivlin said.
Aug 7 09 10:40 PM
December 1, 2007 7:31 AM
The alleged rape victim in the Eric Frimpong case walked into the Santa Barbara Superior Courtroom Friday
afternoon crying but was able to compose herself and describe a night of heavy drinking and a brutal attack.
In a voice so low at times she was hard to hear, the young woman described the night of the alleged attack in
response to questions posed by Deputy District Attorney Mary Barron.
She said the day started out well. She felt "ecstatic" because she got her driver's license and
her sister was in town visiting and she wanted to show her the UCSB dormitory where she lived.
She was a freshman at the time and eager to introduce her sister to her friends.
The evening's activities started out at her dormitory as she and her friends got together. She said she had
three to four shots of vodka in the dorm before her sister arrived, but described her intoxication level as low.
"I have a high tolerance to alcohol -- I can out-drink a lot of people," she told the jury, adding she
had her first drink in the seventh grade and would drink on the weekends.
She and her friends left the dormitory and went to a friend's house for a get-together, where she consumed
some beers, she testified. About 10:30 p.m., she and her friends, including a young man with whom she had been having an intimate relationship, walked to
another friend's house, where she consumed three to four shots of rum, she said.
She left that party alone walking to a fraternity party, she said. Outside the house, she was not able to get
anyone to answer the phone and let her into the party. At that point, she met Mr. Frimpong, who was friendly, she said. He invited her to his house to play
There, she consumed more beer as she was losing the game, which calls for the loser to drink. She testified that
she was constantly sipping beer during the game, saying she was "buzzed but OK."
She and Mr. Frimpong next went down to the beach near his house, and at that point the sequence of events is
less clear, she said.
"After the game, my memory is not in order," she said.
She said they walked down the stairs to the beach and the next thing she knew, Mr. Frimpong threw her to the
ground and she was screaming, "Please stop."
She testified that she knew it was Mr. Frimpong because she remembered his accent when he was yelling at her.
She said he strangled her with both hands around her neck and yelled at her to shut up. She said she felt scared -- "something I never felt before"
-- and that she was trying to breathe, but it felt like her throat was "collapsing in on itself."
She said he hit her in the face, bit her on the cheek "with a lot of force" and that she tried to
fight but he was able to rape her.
Mr. Frimpong, a former UCSB soccer player, is charged with one count of rape against the woman and one count of
sexual battery against another female student in connection with a separate incident in January.
As her testimony continued, the woman said she lost consciousness at some point.
Afterward, she "crawled through the stairs to get to Del Playa Drive and called for help.
The alleged rape victim's friend Benjamin Randall, with whom she was having an intimate relationship, also
On cross examination, Mr. Randall testified that on the night in question, when he saw Mr. Frimpong and the
alleged rape victim walking along Del Playa Drive together, he "might have been a little upset."
He said when he saw them together, he called her on her cell phone, but never saw her again that
According to the cell phone records introduced in court, the call lasted 81 seconds. He said he asked her who
she was with and she told him.
Defense counsel Robert Sanger asked the witness what else was said during the conversation to account for its 81
second duration, but Mr. Randall could not remember.
Later, he said she also told him during that call that she was going to the man's house to play beer
Mr. Randall testified that the last time he had sex with the alleged victim was about a week before the alleged
Mr. Sanger, while asking a question, said Mr. Randall's semen was found in the alleged victim's panties
from the night in question and that afterward, he was questioned by the sheriff's department.
In the courtroom Friday were about 20 of Mr. Frimpong's friends and supporters who watched the trial. Direct
examination of the alleged victim resumes at 9 a.m. Monday in Dept. 2.
Aug 7 09 10:41 PM
November 29, 2007 7:28 AM
The sister and father of the alleged victim in the Eric Frimpong case testified in Santa Barbara Superior Court
on Wednesday that soon after the alleged incident in February, the accuser told them she had been raped.
Other testimony came from a string of witnesses, mostly Mr. Frimpong's housemates at the time, who testified
they saw him playing "beer pong" at their house on Feb. 16, the night of the alleged attack, with a female student who possessed some of the
woman's physical characteristics. Two more witnesses testified Mr. Frimpong's girlfriend was looking for him early the next morning and that she
The alleged victim's sister testified that she was in town visiting her sister at UCSB on Feb. 16 and 17.
The prosecution says the alleged incident took place late Feb. 16 or in the early morning hours of Feb. 17.
About 1:30 a.m. on Feb. 17, the woman's sister said she received a voice mail message from her father to
call her sister. She subsequently got into her car and drove to her sister's dormitory to meet her sister and two of her dorm mates who had picked her up
near the beach along Del Playa Drive in Isla Vista.
While she and the two friends drove the alleged victim to the hospital, she asked what had happened. She said
her sister explained how she had met someone outside a party that night and went to his house where they played "beer pong." She described the man as
"African-American" and said his name was Eric, the woman testified. The alleged victim said that after the drinking game, they went down to the
beach, her sister said.
"Once they got down to the beach, he got really aggressive and raped her," she said her sister told
her. "He knocked her down and held her down and she was trying to push him away."
She said she noticed her sister's cheek was swollen and when she asked what happened, she told her,
"Oh, he must have hit me."
Her sister said her wrist hurt and that she must have hurt it when she was pushing her attacker away, the woman
She also testified that her sister told her she didn't want to go to the hospital because she didn't
want to get in trouble. She said she understood that to mean in trouble for drinking.
When the alleged victim's father testified later Wednesday he said he was awakened early the morning of Feb.
17 by a call from his daughter.
"She was very, very upset, distraught . . . and you could hear her voice quivering, sort of sobbing,"
he said. "She said she had been raped."
He testified that they talked about where she was and how she was. He said she told him she had met a person on
the street and gone to a small get-together, and then walked to the beach when the attack occurred.
He said he remembered she said she had been choked or strangled.
"She was speaking clearly -- crying on and off -- but I understood everything she said."
Carlie Nagel, a friend of the alleged victim from her high school years, also testified she received a call from
the accuser soon after the alleged rape.
She said her friend was "very upset, crying really hard" and wanted the phone number of a mutual
friend. She said she had been raped, Ms. Nagel testified.
The sister of one of Mr. Frimpong's housemates, Danielle Hale, who was staying at the house on the night in
question testified that she conversed with Mr. Frimpong earlier in the evening and that he did not appear to be intoxicated. She said she saw him at the house
that night playing "beer pong" with a "girl" with dark hair whom she believed to be of Asian descent. She said the woman didn't appear
She said she was awakened by voices later that night and heard her brother and Mr. Frimpong's girlfriend
"She came in asking if he knew where Eric was," Ms. Hale said. "She sounded emotional -- not full
on crying, but sounded like (she was) tearing, sort of crying."
A number of Mr. Frimpong's housemates testified that they saw a "girl" playing "beer
pong" with him at his house that night.
One of them, Jeffrey Ball, said the female playing the drinking game "seemed petite, Asian or part
Another housemate, William Lund, described a girl of medium height with dark skin and dark hair.
"She may have been Asian," he said.
Brandon Hale, another housemate, testified that at about 1:15 a.m., Mr. Frimpong's girlfriend came in to use
the restroom and was asking if the defendant was sleeping in his room. All of Wednesday's witnesses were called by deputy district attorney Mary
Aug 7 09 10:43 PM
November 28, 2007 7:14 AM
Two women who picked up the alleged victim in the Eric Frimpong case testified in Santa Barbara Superior Court
on Tuesday that their friend was dirty and disheveled and said she had been raped when they found her walking along Del Playa Drive in the early morning hours
of Feb. 17.
Mr. Frimpong, a former UCSB soccer player, is charged with one count of rape against the UCSB student, and one
count of sexual battery against another female student in connection with a separate alleged incident in January.
The first witness, Lakshmi Krishna, said the alleged victim called her about 1:30 a.m., not long after the
alleged rape took place, and asked to be picked up. She sounded "hysterical" and was breathing heavily, Ms. Krishna said.
She said that after the call, she and another friend from their UCSB dormitory drove along Del Playa Drive
trying to locate the young woman, who had hung up without giving them an address. They subsequently found her.
Ms. Krishna testified that the first thing she noticed was that the alleged victim was not wearing shoes and
appeared dirty and disheveled.
"She didn't have her purse," was crying and "her face was stained with tears," Ms.
Krishna said. The woman had a bruise on her face, was holding her wrist "like it hurt" and was limping, she said.
Deputy District Attorney Mary Barron asked if the alleged victim said anything when she got into the car. She
said, "I was raped," the witness testified.
Ms. Krishna said the woman told them she had met a "black guy" after she left a party and that he had
a "weird accent -- sounded Caribbean or something." She said they went to his place, started playing "beer pong" and then went to the
Ms. Krishna testified that they drove the alleged victim to a hospital. She later talked to a law enforcement
officer at the Isla Vista Foot Patrol sheriff's substation and made a statement, the witness said. The woman was then taken to the Sexual Assault Response
Ms. Krishna said that the next day, they took the alleged victim to her first day at a new job in an Isla Vista
restaurant. They accompanied her to work for the next two months because they were concerned for her safety, the witness said. One day, Mr. Frimpong came into
the restaurant to order food, and Ms. Krishna said the alleged victim went to the back of the restaurant until he left.
On cross-examination, defense lawyer Robert Sanger asked the witness if she knew if the alleged victim had
smoked marijuana or taken Ecstasy the night of the incident. Ms. Krishna said the woman had not.
The next witness to take the stand, UCSB student Mia Wolfson, testified that she thought the alleged victim had
eight to nine shots of vodka at the dorm the night of the incident, prior to going to the drinking party. But, she said, the woman wasn't very intoxicated.
She was "buzzed," Ms. Wolfson said.
She said she went with Ms. Krishna to pick up the alleged victim on Del Playa Drive that night and found her
hysterical, missing her shoes and "all dirty." She told them she was raped, Ms. Wolfson testified.
She said she saw a bruise like a bite mark on the alleged victim's face -- "a weird circle (mark) with
nothing in the middle." She said she had a bruise on her "behind" also, but she was not sure if it was a bite mark. She testified that the
alleged victim said she didn't know how it had gotten there.
Ms. Wolfson said the woman told her the man she drank with kissed her and that she didn't want to be kissed.
The next thing she knew, Ms. Wolfson said the alleged victim told them, "she was on the floor and she felt hit in the face."
On cross-examination, Mr. Sanger asked the witness if she knew if the alleged victim used Ecstasy the night of
the incident. Ms. Wolfson said she knew the alleged victim had not used the drug, because they were friends and the woman would have told her.
Aug 7 09 10:44 PM
November 27, 2007 7:27 AM
The trial started Monday in the case of the UCSB soccer player accused of one count of forcible rape against a
UCSB female student, and one count of sexual battery against another female student.
The defendant in the case, Eric Frimpong, appeared relaxed as he listened to opening statements and the
testimony of one of the alleged victims -- the one who has accused him of committing a sexual battery.
Deputy District Attorney Mary Barron, in her opening statement, presented allegations that in late January, Mr.
Frimpong met a freshman student late one night on the streets of Isla Vista. Ms. Barron said the young woman had been at a party drinking. After meeting on the
street, Mr. Frimpong and the woman decided to go down to the beach, where they started to run and pretend to play soccer. She alleges that at one point, Mr.
Frimpong tried to draw the woman close to him and touched her buttock. After repeatedly asking him not to touch her, she said, she started to run away. She
alleges Mr. Frimpong ran after her and tackled her, but she was able to break loose and left the area.
"She was able to get away, but left her cell phone and purse on the beach," Ms. Barron told the jury,
composed of nine women and four men, including one alternate.
The prosecutor went on to describe an incident involving another female student in mid-February. This student,
also a freshman, she said, had consumed eight to nine shots of vodka and beer and was walking along Del Playa Drive when she met Mr. Frimpong.
Ms. Barron told the jury the two went back to his residence and began to play "beer pong," until the
alleged victim said she had had enough alcohol. At this point, the two went down to the beach, where she alleges Mr. Frimpong "suddenly became violent . .
. and, stifling her screams," raped her.
Mr. Frimpong's defense counsel, Robert Sanger, in his opening statement, began by explaining how his client
was instrumental in helping the UCSB team win a national soccer championship the year before, and that the team was the focus of media attention.
"He has offers to play professional soccer," Mr. Sanger told the jury.
He said on the night in question, his client was walking around Isla Vista when he met a young woman who agreed
to go to his residence and play "beer pong." The woman at some point wanted to smoke and, as Mr. Sanger explained it, they went to the
"A young man appeared to be following her," Mr. Sanger related.
The defense contends that the alleged victim went up to the other man and started touching and kissing
"At that point, Mr. Frimpong told her he didn't want anything to do with her," Mr. Sanger
The alleged victim, according to Mr. Sanger, then reached down into Mr. Frimpong's pants and grabbed his
testicle, he alleges. Mr. Frimpong then left and went to his girlfriend's house where he spent the remainder of the night.
First to testify was the alleged victim who accuses the defendant of a sexual battery.
She testified that late the evening of Jan. 27, she went to her sister's house in Isla Vista, where she
consumed about three shots of vodka and coke, for a total of five shots of alcohol that night.
Asked if she was drunk, she responded that she had enough alcohol to "lower her inhibitions" and that
she was "up for anything." She said she was intoxicated but under control, and had no problem walking or talking.
After about two hours, she testified, she left the party and was on the way to a friend's house to retrieve
her purse, which she had left there a week earlier, when she encountered Mr. Frimpong on Del Playa Drive. She agreed to go down to the beach with him and had
no objections to him touching her waist. But, she said, when he touched her buttock, she removed his hand from that area and asked him to stop. She testified
that she had to do this at least three times as he ignored her protests, after which she became uncomfortable with the situation and knew she had to get away.
She said she ran off, past her purse, and her cell phone dropped. She alleges Mr. Frimpong ran after her and tackled her, but she was able to get away from his
grasp with no further touching.
She testified that Mr. Frimpong afterward picked up her phone and purse and later called one of her friends in
an effort to return the items. She e-mailed him and the two eventually met to retrieve her phone in an Isla Vista Subway restaurant. She testified that in her
e-mails, she appeared apologetic so as not to discourage him from returning her property.
Her e-mail was placed on the projector screen for the jury to view: "Sorry I ran away. I was pretty drunk
last night. Thanks for grabbing my stuff. How can I get it back."
She further testified that she did not at first think to contact the sheriff's office. However, when the
story about the other female student accusing Mr. Frimpong of rape appeared in the campus newspaper, the Daily Nexus, she decided reporting the incident was
the right thing for her to do.
The alleged victim at first testified that she left her purse at the top of the stairs to the beach. However,
under cross-examination by Mr. Sanger, she said she might have left the purse on the stairs.
"You didn't remember much about the evening." Mr. Sanger responded.
Again, when the witness said she didn't remember that she had told the sheriff's officers Mr. Frimpong
had tried to kiss her until after she refreshed her memory by reading her statement, Mr. Sanger said, "You don't recall what
Next, the alleged victim's sister took the stand. She said her sister had told her after the incident that a
man tried to kiss her and pull her close. When she protested and ran, he tackled her.
She said her sister seemed confused about the incident. She didn't understand why the man was acting as he
was. She said she told her sister it was not safe to go down to the beach and that she shouldn't trust some people.
The trial resumes today in Courtroom 14, presided over by Santa Barbara Superior Court Judge Brian
Aug 7 09 10:47 PM
November 20, 2007 8:49 AM
Jury selection began yesterday in the case of a UCSB soccer player accused of raping a female student in
Eric Frimpong pleaded not guilty in April to charges that he raped a female student and sexually assaulted
another woman about three weeks earlier.
Santa Barbara County Superior Court Judge Brian Hill began the questioning of prospective jurors at 1:30 p.m.
The judge asked each individual several questions, including their association, if any, with UCSB.
One prospective juror said he is a UCSB student and familiar with the details of the case. The judge removed the
man from the pool of prospective jurors.
A woman told the judge she has a son who is a UCSB student. The judge admonished her not to talk with her son
about the case.
The judge also asked if anyone or a family member had been a victim of rape or prosecuted on charges of rape.
One man said his sister had been such a victim, but he thought he could be fair and impartial in this case.
Judge Hill asked each if he or she could be impartial, given the accused is an African-American man and the
alleged victims are people of a different race.
"Do you know anything about this case or the nature of the case?" the judge repeatedly asked each
The judge said, "Should you be selected as a juror" -- even as a prospective juror -- there is to be
no contact, not even eye contact, with anyone involved in the case. This includes attorneys, witnesses and the defendant.
He told them as jurors they are not to discuss the case with anyone during the trial.
The case is to be "decided by the evidence presented here and not by anything else," Judge Hill
The case is expected to begin Nov. 26 and continue possibly until Dec. 18, he said.
Mr. Frimpong appeared with his defense attorney Bob Sanger.
Deputy District Attorney Mary Barron appeared for the People.
The trial will take place in Courtroom 14.
Aug 7 09 10:53 PM
LEANA ORSUA, NEWS-PRESS STAFF WRITER
April 11, 2007 12:00 AM
Appearing in a Santa Barbara courtroom Tuesday, UCSB soccer player Eric Frimpong pleaded not guilty to charges
that he raped a female student in February and sexually assaulted another woman about three weeks earlier.
Superior Court Judge Brian Hill denied a motion by defense attorney Bob Sanger to strike the state's
complaint of "aggravated factors" in the February rape, which allegedly occurred on an Isla Vista beach.
Filed by Deputy District Attorney Mary Barron, the complaint alleges that the rape involved great violence or
bodily harm, a circumstance that would help secure a stricter sentence if the case went to trial and Mr. Frimpong were convicted.
Judge Hill also ruled that evidence on the sexual assault charge will be allowed.
Mr. Sanger told the News-Press on Monday that recent results of a DNA test performed on the alleged rape victim
do not match his client's DNA.
Ms. Barron would neither confirm nor deny the claim Tuesday, stating that she wanted to comply with a voluntary
gag order she and Mr. Sanger agreed to early in the case. "It's important to understand the case is still under investigation," she
If the DNA results stand, Mr. Sanger said he would likely file a motion to have the case dropped. But he
won't be able to do that until the preliminary hearing. A date for that hearing could be set May 3.
Aug 7 09 10:55 PM
March 29, 2007 7:57 AM
For the third time since his February arrest on rape allegations, UCSB soccer player Eric Frimpong left Santa
Barbara County Superior Court on Wednesday without entering a plea.
Arguments filed by defense attorney Robert Sanger over a new complaint by the District Attorney's Office
delayed the arraignment until April 10.
Mr. Frimpong, who is free on $250,000 bail, was expected to plead not guilty. However, Judge Clifford Anderson
granted the delay, despite the concerns of Deputy District Attorney Mary Barron.
"We have a concern with delaying the arraignment," she said. "The court is aware of these
charges. There are two vulnerable victims."
In a "notice of aggravated factors" filed Tuesday, Ms. Barron alleges that the crime involved great
violence or bodily harm, that the victim was particularly vulnerable and that the manner in which the crime was carried out indicates planning, sophistication
Mr. Sanger argued that the complaint was merely a way for prosecutors to get around a U.S. Supreme Court ruling
making it unconstitutional for a judge rather than a jury to determine sentences in regard to aggravated findings.
The move by Ms. Barron, said Mr. Sanger, is a legal strategy aimed at helping the prosecution secure a harsher
punishment for Mr. Frimpong if the case were to go to trial and he was found guilty.
Mr. Sanger filed a motion to strike the complaint, stating in court documents that Ms. Barron's filing was
the prosecution's attempt to create a new criminal procedure, which he contends violates his client's right to due process and a fair trial. Ms. Barron
was unavailable for comment.
Judge Anderson gave both sides a deadline of April 5 to file further papers in the matter.
Mr. Frimpong, a Kansas City Wizards draftee, is accused of raping a female student who he met while walking on
the beach in the 6600 block of Del Playa Drive on Feb. 17.
Since then, a second victim has come forward, alleging that she also was sexually assaulted by Mr.
Aug 7 09 10:56 PM
February 28, 2007 8:08 AM
The roommate of Eric Frimpong, a UCSB soccer player accused of raping one woman and sexually assaulting another,
could be slapped with a restraining order if allegations that he recently made contact with one of the victims through the Internet prove to be
At a hearing at Santa Barbara County Superior Court on Tuesday, Deputy District Attorney Mary Barron presented a
printed copy of the alleged online correspondence between Mr. Frimpong's roommate, Patrick Monahan, and the first of two victims, whom Ms. Barron referred
to as "Jane Doe Number 1" to conceal her identity.
Ms. Barron contends that Mr. Monahan made contact with the victim at the university through Facebook, a social
networking program similar to the popular Internet site MySpace.
"There's no way this Patrick Monahan should have known the name of Jane Doe Number 1," Ms. Barron
said in court, insinuating that Mr. Frimpong, the 21-year-old Ghana born soccer star, gave his friend the information.
In rape cases, the names of the victims are listed as "Jane Doe" on court documents in order to
conceal their identities. The only way Mr. Monahan could have attained the woman's name, Ms. Barron contended in court, was through the accused.
Mr. Frimpong, who is being held on $250,000 bail, was charged with raping a UCSB student 11 days ago on an Isla
Vista beach. Last week, a second victim accused the senior midfielder of sexual assault.
Denying that the star athlete had anything to do with the alleged Internet correspondence, Defense Attorney
Robert Sanger, who appeared in court with his client, told Judge Brian Hill that he firmly believed Mr. Frimpong did not put his friend up to it.
It is unclear what the nature of the correspondence between Mr. Monahan and the victim might have
In a separate matter related to the case, attorneys for both sides pleaded for Judge Hill to issue a gag order
in hopes of keeping the case from being tried in the media.
In his argument, Mr. Sanger contended that Sheriff's Department spokesperson Erik Raney recently made
statements -- beyond what was provided in a press release issued by the Sheriff's Department -- related to the case in an interview with
"There's no point in making this more speculative and more sensational than it is," Mr. Sanger
told Judge Hill.
"If the Sheriff's Department is going to go out there and make statements to the public, then my
agreement with Ms. Barron is going to fall by the wayside," he added, referring to a voluntary agreement both attorneys made not to discuss the case with
Mr. Sanger has stated that he is concerned that the second assault allegation may be a result of the news
coverage on the case. However, counsel for the county, who was also present in the courtroom, defended the Sheriff's Department's correspondence with
"Placing a gag order would unduly interfere with their (sheriff's department's) investigatory
process," said attorney Kelly Scott.
"There is a First Amendment right on the part of the press and the Sheriff's Department," said
Judge Hill, denying the motion to issue the gag order.
Judge Hill added that it was too early in the case for him to make such a ruling. "At this point we're
not even ready to set a court trial," he stated.
Both Mr. Frimpong, who was ordered to relinquish his passport to the court last week, and his roommate have been
instructed to appear in court Thursday.
A decision is expected to be made as to whether or not there is enough evidence to issue a restraining order for
Mr. Monahan, a move that would prohibit him from having any contact with the victim.
Aug 7 09 10:58 PM
By Leana Orsua
February 27, 2007 1:13 PM
The roommate of a UCSB soccer player accused of sexually assaulting two women could be issued a restraining
order if allegations that he made contact with one of the alleged victims prove true.
At a hearing today in a Santa Barbara courtroom, Deputy District Attorney Mary Barron presented a printed copy
of alleged online correspondence between Eric Frimpong's roommate, Patrick Monahan and a woman referred to by Ms. Barron as Jane Doe No. 1.
Ms. Barron contends that Mr. Monahan made contact with the woman through the social networking site
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