Rape charges against former football player dismissed

A California judge has dismissed rape charges that resulted in a California high school football player being sent to prison for 5 years.  The dismissal came after the woman who had accused the former athlete of rape charges, recanted her accusations.

Brian Banks has spent 5 years in prison on the basis of false accusations made by Wanetta Gibson.  Gibson recently contacted Banks, to tell him that she had recanted her accusations, she had made against him back in 2002.

At the time of those allegations, Banks was a college football player with the possibility of a professional career with the NFL ahead of him.  Even USC had offered him a scholarship.  However all those dreams turned to dust when the then-15-year-old Gibson, accused Banks of rape.  Banks was 17 years old at the time.  He was accused of raping Gibson at the Long Beach Polytechnic High School.  Banks did not deny that the two had had sex, but insisted that it was consensual.

However, he was charged as an adult on counts of forcible rape and sodomy by force, and accepted a plea deal.  Under the terms of the plea deal, he was sent to prison for 5 years.

It shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone that the incarceration destroyed Banks’ football career.  He was also required to register as a sex offender, and when he was informed by Gibson that she had recanted her accusations, he was still on probation.  His attorneys were able to record the conversation between Banks and Gibson, and present it before the court.

Prosecutors recommended that the case be dismissed, and the Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge has now thrown out the charges.  Banks is considering filing a claim against the State of California, and says that he is entitled to $100 a day for every day that he spent incarcerated.