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Report: Roethlisberger told police he didn't have sex with accuser

  • By NFL.com Wire Reports
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Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger told Milledgeville, Ga., police and people in his party that he didn't have intercourse with the 20-year-old woman who has accused him of sexual assault, Pittsburgh television station KDKA reported Wednesday, citing sources.

According to KDKA, Roethlisberger admitted last Friday -- the day of the alleged incident -- to having contact with the woman at the Capital City nightclub, but he said it wasn't consummated. Afterward, the woman slipped and fell, injuring her head, Roethelisberger told police, according to sources.

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The woman went to a local hospital, where she was treated and released, Deputy Police Chief Richard Malone said last weekend.

Authorities are still investigating the matter, and Roethlisberger hasn't been charged. He's cooperating with authorities, and police have said they expect to interview the quarterback again in the next several days. Police plan to take a DNA sample from Roethlisberger, but KDKA reported that the quarterback's attorney, Ed Garland, hasn't agreed to it.

Garland has said Roethlisberger is innocent of any crime and that no sexual assault occurred. Two Atlanta-based attorneys for the woman who accused Roethlisberger have said that she did the right thing and asked for her family's privacy.

Steelers offensive tackle Willie Colon was with Roethlisberger at the nightclub, but he didn't witness anything, his agent said Wednesday. Joe Linta told The Associated Press that Colon was on the dance floor and not close by when Roethlisberger allegedly sexually assaulted the woman.

"Willie, although he was in the building, had no knowledge of the incident, and his name should not be brought up about this incident again," Linta said. "The first knowledge he had was when he was stopped when leaving the place to be asked some questions."

Colon was part of a group of Roethlisberger's friends who went to Milledgeville to celebrate the quarterback's 28th birthday.

Two off-duty Pennsylvania law enforcement officers also were with Roethlisberger, but they didn't see anything inappropriate, according to a lawyer for one of the men.

Pennsylvania attorney Michael Santicola represents Anthony Barravecchio, an officer on the force in the Pittsburgh suburb of Coraopolis, but he said Pennsylvania Trooper Ed Joyner also is a longtime friend. Santicola, who's based in western Pennsylvania, said both officers are cooperating fully with the investigation.

"They saw nothing inappropriate, no criminal activity and no inappropriate contact or behavior," said Santicola, who added that Barravecchio was "completely sober" during the evening.

Santicola also said the officers don't remember meeting Roethlisberger's accuser.

"If they did meet the woman, they have no memory of it," Santicola said. "This was a crowded bar with people everywhere."

Roethlisberger, who owns a home about 30 miles north of Milledgeville on Lake Oconee, also is being sued by a woman who claims that he raped her in 2008 at a hotel-casino in Lake Tahoe -- an allegation he strongly denies. It is a civil matter as no criminal charges were filed.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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