Jane Doe is the woman who filed a civil suit in August 2015 saying that Derrick Rose and two friends of his came over to her apartment and gang-raped her while she was too drunk, and possibly drugged, to consent. She eventually went to the Los Angeles police, who say they are investigating but have not brought any charges.
Yesterday, with her civil suit at trial, Doe testified and underwent part of Rose’s lawyer’s cross-examination. During her testimony, she went into detail about the morning after, the fear of waking up, realizing something bad had happened, and trying to figure out what exactly Rose and his friends had done. Several times, Doe stopped and cried before being able to finish her testimony.
Even before the trial began, Rose’s legal team continually found ways in their court filings and at court hearings to bring up the details of Doe’s sexual history with Rose. It reached the point that the judge presiding over the case called out the lawyers for it in one ruling, warning them: “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.”
That continued for a bit yesterday, when one defense lawyer asked if the judge if he was going to do anything about how much Doe was crying during her testimony. The judge refused.
Defense lawyers drilled down today on what Jane Doe does and does not remember about the night she says Derrick Rose and two friends raped her, pointing out inconsistencies in her story over time. They also discussed how drunk she was that night and her memory issues, saying her lack of recollection may have made it not rape, but just something she didn’t remember. One key point in Doe’s testimony was that at some point she stopped answering her phone calls and text messages from Rose. But defense lawyers said she did answer phone calls from a friend of Ryan Allen, a friend of Rose’s. They also asked how the men got into her apartment since they needed to be let in and did not know the unit number. Doe tried a few answers, maybe she told them or maybe they got the number from her mailbox, before she ended on “I don’t recall.”
To show how drunk she was, one lawyer pointed out two text messages she sent. One was from earlier in the night, and had the wrong address, because she gave the wrong type of street. The second text message, closer to when she alleged the rape happened, had it correct.
Both lawyers in different ways said that her lack of memory didn’t make it rape. They said there were many things she did not recall from that night, like all the text message she admitted she did not recall sending.
“It sounds like you’re relying on what other people said,” Mike Monico said.
As the memory issue came up, several times Doe said that what happened during a blackout was not sex. “I don’t think sex is able to occur when you are blacked out,” she said.
“When two people are actually able to be awake and be with each other,” she said, laying out her idea of how consensual sex occurs. “When they are not blacking out. When they are not intoxicated.”
Much of the cross was taken up with pointing out inconsistencies in Doe’s story over time. One document said she went to the police in August 2013. In a deposition, she said December 2015. In court, she has said that she filed a report in December but talked to the police in August.
The judge again had to remind the lawyers to stick to the night in question—although it was required because of questions asked by the woman’s lawyer about if she ever had sex with three men. When Waukeen McCoy started to ask about it, Judge Michael Fitzgerald cut him off before he could finish and reminded him to focus on “on event that are actually in dispute.”
This post will be updated with further developments.