Back in December of 2012, a Florida State student said she was raped by star QB and eventual Heisman Trophy winner Jameis Winston. School officials met with Winston a month later, but they may have violated federal law by delaying the investigation as well as meeting with Winston alone, which was against the given legal advice.
Because of that, the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights is investigating the manner in which Florida State handled the sexual assault allegations, thus continuing the drama we thought might have been tucked away.
This is all happening now because of a federal complaint filed by Winston’s accuser in March. Federal Title IX laws, which cover sexual harassment and violence, are very serious and can result in a school’s federal funding being taken away. That’s the worst-case scenario right now for the school, but this is a developing story. It’s not out of the question.
For Winston personally, he would be tried on a “preponderance of evidence” standard, lower than that of criminal courts. A campus disciplinary body then determines if an accused student is responsible or not, and punishments if found guilty can range anywhere from writing a simple paper to expulsion. There’s obviously a very wide body of possibilities to consider.
It must be very disheartening for Florida State fans and even general supporters of college athletes to see this healing scab — or so we thought — be re-opened in what could potentially become an ugly affair, much like the first round of this saga. The only difference here is that this wound may require much more healing than we previously expected.
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While all this is being sorted out, Winston will be with the No. 4-ranked Florida State Seminoles baseball team as they prepare for the Road to Omaha and you can too by getting you College World Series tickets here.