Lawyers for the woman suing Derrick Rose and two friends for sexual assault filed a motion Sunday night arguing that the plaintiff should be allowed to keep her anonymity during the trial, both because there is an active criminal investigation by the LAPD into the alleged rapes and because the plaintiff has already begun receiving online harassment from fans of Derrick Rose.
Nadine Hernandez, a detective with the LAPD, confirmed to Deadspin that an investigation is ongoing, but could not elaborate on whether or not interviews have been conducted with the relevant parties. Rose did participate in a deposition for the civil lawsuit on June 17 that is filed under seal, parts of which are available in public court documents. Anything in that deposition could feasibly be used to aid a criminal investigation.
The judge presiding over the civil lawsuit ruled last week that the plaintiff would not be allowed to use a pseudonym at trial—she was allowed to go by Jane Doe through the discovery process, though Rose’s attorneys were allowed to name her to the witnesses and experts they deposed—deciding that the use of a pseudonym could impart to the jury that the court was partial to the defendant.
The plaintiff’s motion, filed Sunday, asserts that “a ruling may be reconsidered when new material facts emerge.” Attorneys for the plaintiff include a letter from Detective Hernandez confirming an ongoing criminal investigation and screenshots of Derrick Rose/Knicks fans naming the plaintiff in Instagram posts, TMZ comments, and a story on a website about athlete wives and girlfriends. The plaintiff was also named ahead of the judge’s ruling by a popular but not credible sports blog, which posted a story exposing her identity before the judge made his ruling, claiming it was their right to name her to make sure Rose got a fair trial.
Last week, Knicks president Phil Jackson said the team is “not concerned” with the civil lawsuit against Derrick Rose.
“One thing I’d like to address about Derrick Rose and the process he’s going through—we anticipate it will not affect his season, hopefully, training camp or games,” Jackson said, according to the New York Post. “We’re going to let the due process of the justice system work its way through the next week and a half. We want to put this to rest. There doesn’t need to be a lot of talk about this.”
The judge presiding over the civil lawsuit issued a warning last week to Rose’s attorneys to cut out the victim-blaming and smearing in their defense argument.
“If Defendant Rose continues to utilize language that shames and blames the victims of rape either in his motion practice or before the jury, the Court will consider sanctions,” the judge said in a filing.
The civil lawsuit trial is scheduled to begin October 4 in Los Angeles.
Update (12:59 p.m.): During Knicks media day, Rose said he first learned of the criminal investigation today.