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UNC upholds finding of no sexual assault in football player’s case

Kerry Sutton, left, attorney for Allen Artis, second from left, said her client plans to plead not guilty and ‘clear his name.’
Kerry Sutton, left, attorney for Allen Artis, second from left, said her client plans to plead not guilty and ‘clear his name.’ News & Observer file photo

An administrative review has upheld UNC-Chapel Hill’s investigative finding that there was no violation by a suspended UNC football player accused of sexual assault.

In a short statement Friday, Kerry Sutton, the attorney who represents Allen Artis, said the university’s original finding had been affirmed by Gena Carter, an administrative reviewer chosen by the university. Three weeks ago, UNC’s Title IX office found that Artis did not violate any UNC policy as claimed by Delaney Robinson, who said she was assaulted Feb. 14, 2016. Robinson appealed.

Denise Branch, attorney for Robinson, issued a statement Friday.

“Ms. Robinson is deeply troubled by the University’s apparent disregard of the scientific, medical, and expert evidence that shows she was sexually assaulted on February 14, 2016,” Branch’s statement said. “Out of deference to Orange County District Attorney Jim Woodall’s ongoing criminal investigation, no further comment will be made at this time.”

Artis, who was indefinitely suspended from the football team, still faces misdemeanor charges of sexual battery and assault on a female. Last year, Robinson swore out warrants for those charges. In a news conference, she said she had been raped at an on-campus apartment on Valentine’s Day and that she was intoxicated at the time.

Artis has denied the allegation, saying what happened at the apartment was “completely consensual.”

A trial date has not been set. Sutton said unless the district attorney dismisses the charges, Artis “intends to plead not guilty and clear his name.”

The News & Observer’s policy is not to identify people who report they were sexually assaulted, but has done so in this case because Robinson publicly identified herself.

Jane Stancill: 919-829-4559, @janestancill

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