UNC LB accused of assault: I'm no rapist

DURHAM, N.C. (AP) A North Carolina football player facing charges of sexual battery and assault on a female student says the two had consensual sex and that he did not rape nor drug her.
In his first public comments, Allen Artis said Tuesday he isn’t a rapist and is eager to get the case behind him. One of his attorneys, Kerry Sutton, also said Artis has passed a polygraph test about the February incident.
”Everything was completely consensual that happened that night,” said a very composed Artist, who was sitting on a couch in his attorney’s home flanked by his mother Stephanie Artis and an aunt Avis Artis. ”That’s the truth.”
The junior reserve linebacker, indefinitely suspended from the team, turned himself earlier this month on the misdemeanor charges. His next court date is set for Thursday.
The arrest warrant stated Artis had sex with a female UNC student against her will when he ”should have reasonably known that the other person was mentally incapacitated and physically helpless.”
The warrant also states he pulled on her bra strap ”causing an indentation on her shoulder/back” during the incident.
The woman, Delaney Robinson, said earlier this month she had become intoxicated after being out with friends and unable to consent. The Associated Press typically doesn’t identify alleged victims of sexual assault, but Robinson held a Sept. 13 news conference, saying she had filed for the misdemeanor charges after police and prosecutors indicated there wasn’t enough evidence to pursue felony charges.
Her attorney, Denise Branch, also criticized the way campus police handled a rape kit and the questioning of Artis, a native of Marietta, Georgia.
Orange County district attorney Jim Woodall said at the time that the case remains open and that his office has continued to consult with an investigator.
Artis’ indefinitely suspension was the result of an automatic university policy when an athlete is charged with a misdemeanor. Any reinstatement would come after a review from athletic director Bubba Cunningham, head coach Larry Fedora and school officials.
Artis has played in 27 career games as a reserve and on special teams with 20 tackles. He had one tackle through the first two games. Team spokesman Kevin Best said Artis last practiced Sept. 11, which was two days before Robinson’s news conference.

Follow Aaron Beard on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/aaronbeardap and the AP’s college football site at http://collegefootball.ap.org

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