Former Wisconsin wide receiver Quintez Cephus was found not guilty on multiple sexual assault charges on Friday afternoon in Madison, according to the Wisconsin State Journal.
Cephus was charged with two counts of sexual assault last August after two women said he had sex with them at his apartment without their consent in April. Both women said they were too intoxicated to consent, though Cephus claimed the sex was consensual.
He was suspended from the team shortly after the allegations, and was expelled from the school earlier this year for violating its non-academic misconduct code, per the report. The 21-year-old had recorded 595 yards and six touchdowns on 34 receptions over two seasons with Wisconsin, and was projected to be one of the Badgers’ top targets last year.
The jury deliberated for less than 45 minutes, clearing him on the second- and first-degree charges.
“I'm happy,” Cephus said, via the Wisconsin State Journal. “I've had a lot of people here supporting me and my family. I've learned a lot through this situation. And I know this sounds crazy, but I think you grow through what you go through, and I've been able to grow a lot.”
Cephus testified in his own defense on Friday, too, and said that the two women didn’t appear intoxicated when they left a bar to head back to his apartment with his roommate and teammate, Danny Davis.
Cephus testified that when they arrived at the apartment, one of the women went to his bedroom, beckoned him in, and then started removing her clothing, and that the other woman followed Cephus into the bedroom. Cephus said he had sex with both women, and that both had asked for him to do specific things during sex.
According to the Associated Press, Cephus brought Davis into the bedroom after the women had entered because having sex with two women was “something I’d never done before.” The 21-year-old then asked Davis to take a picture of the women, which he later said was “really dumb.”
The two women testified again this week that they were too intoxicated at the time to consent, and one described her memories of the night as “snapshots,” per the report. Cephus, who did not drink that night, said he had met the women just hours before.
“Obviously, we're delighted with the result," Cephus’ attorney, Stephen Meyer, said, via the Wisconsin State Journal. "The jury confirmed what (we) had always insisted from the start, that he was an innocent person. We appreciate the hard work by the jury and the thoughtfulness they showed."
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