LINCOLN, Neb. (KMTV) — On Thursday morning, former Husker player Katerian LeGrone was acquitted after being tried for sexual assault in Lancaster County.
Today I was acquitted of false accusations of sex assault. The past two years fighting for my innocence have been so hard, but justice was served today. Thank you for everyone who stood by me during my hardest times. Now I am moving forward to pursue my academic and football goal— klegrone3 (@yaboifatty) April 15, 2021
In January of 2020, 3 News Now reported that LeGrone and former teammate Andre Hunt appeared in court for a preliminary hearing regarding an incident that took place on August 25, 2019.
The two men were also expelled from the University of Nebraska Lincoln for violating the school's sexual misconduct policy, following a Title IX hearing. A Title IX hearing is not a criminal procedure. It is an investigative process used by universities to determine whether or not gender-based discrimination has taken place. The burden of proof is different than in a court of law.
LeGrone was in good spirits in a press conference after the verdict.
“I feel like a better person today, a better man. I’m a better athlete and I’m just happy right now,” said LeGrone.
Prosecutors argued that Hunt was in bed with a 19-year-old UNL student when LeGrone appeared in the room and switched places with Hunt, and then prosecutors said LeGrone raped her.
LeGrone's attorney, Mallory Hughes, argued that the woman saw LeGrone appear and never said no to having sex.
"If you don't want it, just say you don't want it. And the law will support that decision for you, but you've got to make your voice heard and you can't make somebody guess about what's going on in your head,” said Hughes.
LeGrone’s team has labeled the alleged victim in the case a false accuser.
Sara Eliason with the Women’s Center for Advancement says false reports happen only about two to eight percent of the time.
She emphasizes during any sexual encounter, to get consent.
“This isn’t so intimidating, it’s not scary, it’s really just about respecting a person’s boundaries,” said Eliason.
Nebraska law says a sexual assault victim must verbally or physically try to get out of the situation, if it’s possible to do so.
Eliason says the law is the bare minimum and communication is always important.
“None of us are mind readers, none of us can tell what a person is thinking so it’s just a simple as a quick check in,” said Eliason.
As for LeGrone, he wants to go back and play college football, somewhere.
“I’ve been working harder than I’ve ever been working, so I feel like college coaches will see that and when I start reaching out to coaches and go visit different schools, they’ll know,” said LeGrone.
John Berry, another attorney for LeGrone, says he has a bright future.
“He didn’t stop doing what he needed to do. He continued to study, he continued to workout, he continued to believe in his future and we have believed in him since day one,” said Berry.
Andre Hunt, the former player also involved in the incident, is due in court next month.
Watch the press conference being held by LeGrone and his attorneys, John Barry and Mallory Hughes, on our Facebook page or below.