Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Shannon legal team seeks to admit new evidence

The legal team for Terrence Shannon Jr., the NBA prospect who is scheduled to go on trial next week on a felony rape charge for an alleged incident at a bar in Lawrence, Kansas, will ask a judge to consider the possibility that prosecutors have charged the wrong man at a Friday morning hearing that could prove to be a major development in the case.

In a new court filing Thursday, the lawyers for Shannon asked a judge to admit video evidence that shows another man, who had previously been accused of sexually assaulting another woman at the same bar two weeks earlier, standing near the alleged victim in the “exact” location on the same night and at the same time in September when she said Shannon had sexually assaulted her and penetrated her vagina with his fingers.

Per the filing, the “third-party defendant” had been investigated by police for his alleged actions against the other woman but the charges were subsequently dropped.

“Terrence Shannon, by and through his attorneys Tricia A. Bath and Thomas J. Bath, Jr., and, pursuant to the 14th Amendment due process clause and the 6th Amendment compulsory process and confrontation provisions, hereby moves this court for a pre-trial ruling on the admissibility of evidence related to an identified third-party defendant who is alleged to have committed a similar sexual assault in the same location less than two weeks prior to the alleged assault in Mr. Shannon’s case and who was present [as evidenced by video] within a couple feet of the precise location of the alleged touching in the case at [the] bar,” the filing states.

Shannon was arrested in December and temporarily removed from the Illinois men’s basketball team before he returned after missing six games and led the team to the NCAA tournament. The woman at the bar who has accused him of sexually assaulting her found his image through a Google search before she contacted police after the alleged incident.

The new filing in the case states that a police investigation showed that “no male DNA was found in the vaginal or external genital swabs taken from the alleged victim on the date of the alleged incident and that no other male DNA found on the alleged victim’s thighs, buttocks, or underwear could be matched to Mr. Shannon.”

On the defense team’s first attempt to get evidence of another man who’d been standing near the alleged victim on the night of the alleged incident admitted, a judge ruled that the video footage was “unfettered speculation.” A new judge, however, will allow Shannon’s legal team to present its case Friday morning.

Shannon is ranked 31st among NBA prospects, per ESPN.com. Kansas star Hunter Dickinson and NBA prospect Kevin McCullar Jr. are expected to testify in Shannon’s defense during his trial next week, per court records.

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