University of Washington Running Back Charged with Rape: Allegations, Responses, and Suspensions

Trigger warning: This story discusses allegations of violent sexual assaults. Some details may be upsetting or inappropriate for some readers.

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niversity of Washington running back Tylin Rogers has been charged with one count of rape in the second degree and one count of rape in the third degree after allegedly forcing himself on two women last fall.

Rogers, an 18-year-old freshman, was arrested Friday and released on bail the next day.

That’s despite a legal maneuver by the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office to keep him in custody, “due to the likelihood the defendant will commit another violent offense,” according to the charging documents filed in King County Superior Court on Tuesday.

Deputy Communications Director Douglas Wagoner told KUOW the charges against Rogers were “rush filed.”

“Typically, rush filing is reserved for cases that are more serious in nature and where there is an interest in attempting to hold the defendant in custody,” Wagoner said.

Rogers’ is scheduled to be arraigned in court on April 18. In a statement to KUOW, Rogers’ attorney Robert Flennaugh II said he is innocent.

“He plans to fight every inch of these false claims,” Flennaugh said.

The allegations

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he charging documents detailing the case against Rogers are graphic and allege Rogers forced himself on two victims without their consent.

They note that Rogers “ignored her pleas” when he allegedly attacked the first woman in late October 2023.

She reported the rape to law enforcement on Oct. 28, alleging Rogers asked if they were alone in her apartment before assaulting her. She also told police she had “made it very clear that she did not want to have sex with him” before they met, according to a Seattle Police report. According to the charging documents, Rogers “acknowledged this statement.”

“[The victim] is much smaller and not nearly as strong as him and was afraid he would have thrown her against a wall or start punching her,” according to the police report. “She figured if she complied the assault would have been much less painful. [The victim] is 5’2″ and 110 lbs, and Rogers is listed at 5’11” and 185 lbs.”

She stated the assault was “very rough” and reported to the police that “her body was shaking and twitching.”

The victim told police she had to drop out of school after the assault “as she could not dedicate her attention to school while working through her trauma” and moved back in with her parents for support.

The second victim made similar allegations against Rogers.

She told police she was raped sometime between Halloween and Thanksgiving 2023 — that would put her assault within a month of the first alleged attack.

“[The victim] said Rogers became very forceful as soon as they got into her unit,” according to the police report for her case. “She said it all started within the first minute.”

The victim described a violent attack, during which Rogers allegedly “slapped” her and “used one of his hands to strangle her resulting in restricted breathing.”

The victim also told police “she was screaming for him to stop but he covered her mouth and yelled, ‘No!'”

“While he was on top of her, she was trying to push him off but due to the size difference she was not successful,” according to the SPD report. “[The victim] is 5’3″ and approximately 140 lbs and Rogers is listed at 5’11” and 185 lbs.”

She reported the alleged rape in February.

By then, the University of Washington was already aware of the first woman’s allegations against Rogers, according to police records.

UW’s response

On Nov. 28, about a month after she was allegedly raped, the first woman reported the assault to UW’s Office of the Title IX Coordinator. The details she reported then were consistent with those she provided to officers, according to the police report.

A warrant served on the UW athletic department and the Title IX office confirmed the victim’s report and turned up emails within the athletic department “confirming Rogers should be taken off the travel roster for the Pac-12 Championship game,” according to police records.

The Seattle Times reported Ryan Grubb, then UW’s offensive coordinator, told Sports Illustrated’s FanNation site “Inside the Huskies,” “We’re working through some things, some challenges he had off the field … I can’t comment on what it was exactly, but Tybo’s [Rogers’ nickname] done a great job with being here, listening to directions, and just working through this moment and really being a good steward of the team.”

According to police documents, the warrant served on UW did not turn up any documentation for the change nor any written documentation of “any discipline of Rogers.”

“There were also text messages referencing Rogers and questions being asked about what was going on with him by different people including Rogers’ father,” the report went on. “However, these questions were always followed with a phone call so the responses were not captured digitally.”

Rogers reportedly was suspended for one game, but then allowed to play in the college football playoffs and the national championship game.

Detective Amily Akiyama wrote in her report that she believed “there is a connection between his suspension and [the victim’s] disclosure of the assault, especially after the comments made by the coaching staff in the media release.”

In a statement, UW said, “The University of Washington Intercollegiate Athletics Department is aware of the arrest of a football student-athlete by the Seattle Police Department. The student-athlete has been suspended from all team activities until further notice. The UW will continue to gather facts and cooperate with law enforcement, as requested.”

The alleged rapes occurred last fall, according to prosecutors, when Kalen DeBoer was UW’s head football coach. DeBoer has since left Washington to become the new head football coach at the University of Alabama.

DeBoer’s successor Jedd Fisch addressed reporters about the allegations on Tuesday.

“As soon as I found out about the allegations, as soon as it was brought to our attention, he’s been suspended indefinitely,” Fisch said. “So, I have no comment about what happened in the past. That has nothing to do with me.”

2024-04-10 23:56:10
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