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Report: Ben Roethlisberger's Accuser 'Dragged' by Guards

Apr 15, 2010 – 5:12 PM
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Anthony Olivieri

Anthony Olivieri %BloggerTitle%

Ben RoethlisbergerBodyguards for Ben Roethlisberger were "actively involved" in bringing together the Pittsburgh Steelers' quarterback and his accuser inside a Georgia nightclub, according to a report in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette on Thursday.

A friend of Roethlisberger's accuser, Nicole Biancofiore, told the Post-Gazette that the 20-year-old woman "was dragged by a bodyguard to the back room in Capital. She was extremely intoxicated and not aware of what was happening."

The newspaper also reported that Roethlisberger's personal security prevented friends of the 20-year-old woman from retrieving her from the bathroom in which the quarterback was accused of sexual assault. Roethlisberger, after a month-long investigation by Georgia authorities, was not charged with a crime.

According to the report, two of the accuser's friends -- Aliesha Scholten and Ann Marie Lubatti -- separately tried to rescue the accuser from the bathroom but were unsuccessful. The newspaper reported that Scholten found the bathroom door locked before being escorted away by Roethlisberger's guards; Lubatti tried to reason with guards, pointing out her friend's intoxicated state, before being turned away as well.

"[Roethlisberger's guard] couldn't look me in the eye, and told me he didn't know what was going on," Lubatti said, according to the report. "My friend went to open the door, and it was locked."

Big Ben's accuser gave two statements to police, according to the Post-Gazette, one right after the alleged incident and another several hours later.

"Ben asked us to go to his "VIP" area [back of Capital nightclub]. We all went with him," she wrote in the second statement, according to the newspaper. "He said there were shots for us, numerous shots were on the bar, and he told us to take them. His bodyguard came and took my arm and said come with me, he escorted me into a side door/hallway, and sat me on a stool. He left and Ben came back ... .

"I told him it wasn't OK, no, we don't need to do this and I proceeded to get up and try to leave. I went to the first door I saw, which happened to be a bathroom. He followed me into the bathroom and shut the door behind him. I still said no, this is not OK, and he then had sex with me. He said it was OK. Then he left without saying anything."

The investigation into Roethlisberger's encounter with the woman began on March 5 -- the night/early morning of the alleged incident -- when the accuser, a student at Georgia College and State University, complained to police. An initial police report was filed on March 5 at 1:30 a.m. That report indicated that it was "unclear" what happened after the accuser was escorted by bodyguards to a "back room/hallway where the suspect was" because the accuser's intoxication level fogged her memory.

The accuser's first statement said that after the alleged sexual encounter with Roethlisberger: "My friends found me [and] talked to a Milledgeville [Georgia] policeman [and] he said to report it."
Filed under: Sports