Lawyer for Roethlisberger's Nevada accuser will monitor new case closely

It’s safe to say that Nevada lawyer Calvin Dunlap cracked open a cold one and kicked up his tassled loafers Friday night, after learning that the sexual assault case brought by a former Harrah’s employee against Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger suddenly had gotten stronger.

Technically, the question of whether Roethlisberger assaulted a Georgia college student has no relevance to the question of whether he assaulted Dunlap’s client.  As a practical matter, however, the incident creates real leverage against Roethlisberger.

TMZ reports that Dunlap says he will be “aggressively looking into this new case.”

Under the Nevada rules of evidence, Dunlap could find a way to introduce evidence of the “new case” into the trial of his own case, under what in many jurisdictions is known as “Rule 404(b).”  Though character evidence generally is not admissible in civil cases, evidence of other acts can be used to prove motive, opportunity, intent, preparation, plan, knowledge, identity, and absence of mistake or accident.

And with a final ruling on whether the Georgia evidence can be used not likely to come in at the earliest until the eve of trial in Nevada, the specter of the Georgia incident will loom over the Nevada case, driving up its settlement value.

Meanwhile, the allegation surely has at least shaken the faith of those paid to represent Roethlisberger’s interests.  Though it’s highly unlikely that any of the lawyers will abandon what defense firms like to call a “cost-insensitive client,” the passion they display on behalf of their clinet might be a bit harder to manufacture if they’re beginning to secretly fantasize about a possible Al Pacino opening statement.

So even though anything Roethlisberger did or didn’t do in Georgia or anywhere else doesn’t change what did or didn’t occur in Nevada, the new incident could be used to help convince a jury that the plaintiff in the Nevada case is telling the truth — and that’s why Dunlap will chase down every available detail.    

64 responses to “Lawyer for Roethlisberger's Nevada accuser will monitor new case closely

  1. Love the Al Pacino reference…”The son of a b!tch did it, he should go STRAIGHT to F***ING jail…”

  2. I know not all of your readers are familiar with the FRE, but unless you know something you aren’t telling us, there is no way he can make a successful 404b argument. Unless Nevada has interesting evidence codes that aren’t similar to the federal code or California’s (mine.) OR if you think I’m wrong, what do you think Dunlap is going to argue re: admitting irrelevant?

  3. So would he then be a registered sex offender, and not allowed to attend football games since there would be children present???
    I sure hope so….

  4. Simply put, the chick in Nevada has no case. She bragged about having consensual sex with him to her friends who already ratted her out under sworn deposition. Besides, it’s a civil case, not a criminal case.
    This new allegation is a whole different story since the accuser went right to the police and it looks as if it’s more likly to involve criminal charges if the evidence supports it.
    Regardless, Ben needs to grow his ass up and quit fonling the campus co-eds and the hotel bimbos.

  5. Roethlisberger is slowly beginning to lose the benefit of the doubt.
    He (and his fans) claim it’s because of gold digging bimbos out to make a buck.
    But it’s becoming increasingly impossible to escape the conclusion that Big Ben is a bullying prick when he’s around young women.
    Florio’s right; Ben’s looking like a turd.

  6. I hope that NV lawyer doesn’t characterize this as “pattern of behavior” evidence, since that’s not admissible character evidence.

  7. “Winston Wolfe says:
    What we have here is a pattern of behavior.”
    You got that right. These skanks gotta quit chasing the quick, easy buck.
    What we have here is…. nothing.
    No arrest has been made and no charges have been filed, ever.
    If you’ve ever paid a parking ticket, you’re more guilty in the eyes of the law that B.R. is right now…

  8. This guy reminds me of a Mark Chmura. Remember him Packler fans? Mark Chmura…………………….

  9. Taking bets on the over/under on blog posts Florio will get out of this story. Right now the line is 75.

  10. Here’s another player who thinks he can do what ever he wants. Plaxico got the shaft for shooting himself, Big Ben should get 10-15 for this.

  11. Rapistberger is one stupid man… either that or he thinks he is better than everyone around him. In any event, the man’s credibility is… at best… severely strained.

  12. He IS a piece of sh*t. There is a pattern here. Just a rich prick thinking he can do whatever the hell he wants.
    Actually, I just hope the Browns don’t have to play him twice in the upcoming season.

  13. Not to say he can’t enjoy his life, but he has to know to avoid situations like this, ESPECIALLY WHEN YOU ARE FACING CHARGES FROM A SIMILAR INCIDENT!
    He has just taken stupid to an entirely different level. Like the people who get two or three DUI’s in the same day.

  14. aaronhirsch, “….codes that aren’t similar to the federal code or California’s (mine…”
    Since CA is the land of fruits and nuts, I’m sure the codes are like nothing seen anywhere else. In CA Ben would just be one of the boys spreading the gift that keeps on giving.

  15. Let’s face it, the guy’s a dick. But he can play football.
    Picture Ryan Leaf with talent.

  16. I am no fan of Ben and the Steelers, but the claim in NV was bogus.
    This one we’ll have to wait and see.

  17. FoozieGrooler – Pacman was never convicted of anything that I can remember, so just because you aren’t found guilty, doesn’t mean you didn’t do anything. Big Rapist is always around trouble, and it’s sad that he would even talk to these ugly girls. I’ve never won a Super Bowl and I had sex with 2 girls hotter than her in the last week.

  18. Lock him up!
    Charlie Batck in 2011!
    How much you want to bet more girls step forward in the next few motnhs???

  19. Seems a little fishy. The police report states height and weight (6’5″, 241 lb) that exactly match ESPN’s stats for Ben. Supposedly these figures were reported to the police at 2:30 am on a downtown street – unless they are one of those carnival workers otherwise, looks like it’s possibly premeditated???

  20. How can such a smart QB on the field, be such an idiot off of it? I’m giving him the benefit of the doubt right now and saying he’s innocent…but how could he put himself in these dicey situations TWICE!
    Kobe learned his lesson. Apparently, he’s still a hound, but he has bodyguards with him every step of the way making sure everything’s consensual with his pickups.

  21. It is reported Raider Cult Nation has emailed AL Davis and signed a petition — for the Raiders to trade for Big Ben.
    There is an Oakland Raider “Big Ben” Fan Club signing up members.
    Invaiduh and RDL are Senior members.
    Big Ben is flying out to Oakland for an autograph session, and tickets are sold out.

  22. Thanks, aaronhirsch. I’m not an attorney, but I read up on 404 last night and wondered where on earth Florio was coming from.
    Those citing pattern of behavior … actually, no, it’s not.
    The woman in Nevada is several years older than Ben. They were alone. They were sober. They had intercourse. She told people beforehand that she wanted to have sex with him and afterward that she hoped she was pregnant. She has no physical evidence of assault. There was no police involvement. She waited a year and sued Ben and her colleagues for $3 million.
    The woman in Georgia is several years younger than Ben. They were in a crowded nightclub. They’d been drinking. The police said it was not rape, so intercourse did not occur. The police are investigating.
    The only common thread is that Ben is indiscriminate in his sexual behavior.

  23. @Deb: Finally some thought process, instead of reading “Rapelisberger” comments from the rest of these jealous, basement-dwelling douchebags. Keep it coming.

  24. Whether innocent or guilty, if you talk to people who see him out socially in Pittsburgh, the man is a turd. Often talking filth to females and making sexual gestures. Throw the book at the scum.

  25. The Nevada rule (48.045) seem to pretty closely track the Federal rule 404(b), like Florio says.
    The “Advisory Committe Notes” to the federal rule indicates that the other incident probably should not be admitted into Rothlisberger’s trial. That note says: “Character evidence is of slight probative value and may be very prejudicial. It tends to distract the trier of fact from the main question of what actually happened on the particular occasion. It subtly permits the trier of fact to reward the good man to punish the bad man because of their respective characters despite what the evidence in the case shows actually happened.”
    What the Nevada woman’s lawyers want to do is tell the jury, “He did it another time, so you should infer that he did it this time, too.” That’s WAY too speculative. I bet the Nevada judge keeps it out.

  26. Mr Roethlisberger…..we have Campbell’s Soup on the line for you……oh, wait….I guess they hung up!

  27. See my previous comment, and the recent comment by “Mean D.” Mean D’s approach is exactly what the judge wants to avoid–throwing the book at the scum whether he’s innocent or guilty. That’s not how it’s supose to work.
    BR’s being sued for raping THAT woman on THAT day. That’s all the jury gets to hear about.

  28. # danielcp0303 says: March 7, 2010 2:43 PM
    I’ve never won a Super Bowl and I had sex with 2 girls hotter than her in the last week.
    Me too………but now I cannot afford food for the week 😦

  29. How much did the Lawyer in the Nevada case have to pay this broad in Georgia to file charges against Roethlisberger!

  30. Come on Florio you are a lawyer, tell me it’s not possible that this was a set up by the Nevada Lawyer!

  31. Seems to me he needs to take a lesson from Jack Nicholson when confronted with the fact he hired prostitutes from Heidi Fleiss. “I don’t pay them for sex, I pay them to go away.”

  32. You’re so right they would have a hard time convicting him in CA. Come to think of it they would have a hard time convicting Hitler in CA. There is a difference between CA and NV just ask OJ.

  33. :…# danielcp0303 says: March 7, 2010 2:43 PM
    I’ve never won a Super Bowl and I had sex with 2 girls hotter than her in the last week….”
    Dressing up your mom’s old Hoover upright in cheap lingerie and a wig does not constitute a “hottie”.

  34. “# Mean D says: Throw the book at the scum.”
    For what exactly?
    He hasn’t been arrested, in fact he hasn’t even been charged with anything.
    This ain’t Afghanistan… even though you sound like you’d be right at home there.

  35. What a turd……………..
    Ben Rothlisberger – NFL Pro Quarterback and pride of the Steelers in 2009…………
    Prison Bitch in 2010………..WOW!

  36. @CincyAllDaWay
    Love the comment. You should know your team has enough “prison bitches” that they could make money counseling the rest of the idiots in the NFL

  37. By the way what is a 20 year old (under age) doing in a VIP room at a night club,

  38. Ben never goes out without bodyguards. I don’t believe they would allow him to get in a situation like that in a public place. You watch, she was probably assaulted by someone she knows but blamed him.

  39. @notlisteninganymore….
    You know, we do have some players that have screwed up and acted stupidly no doubt. They’ve partied when they shouldn’t have with people that they shouldn’t have. No doubt about it and I’m denying it. But we’ve never had a rapist on this team, much less a two time rapist! So you tell me, whats worse. Some young guys out drinking with younger girls, drinking and driving and whatnot, or forcing yourself on women. The man disgusts me and should disgust you! Your call……

  40. In this country, the presumption is of innocence. Let’s let the law figure this thing out. Of course, the lawyer for the other case is interested. Roethlisberger’s legal team have been shredding his case to bits.

  41. @CincyAllDaWay …
    Get off your high horse, you hypocrite. You and these other big talkers couldn’t care less about rape issues. You’re just ragging on Steelers fans. If you were truly concerned about rape issues, you’d be paying attention to the facts of these cases. And then you’d know there was no criminal investigation in the first case and no evidence of any sexual assault. The woman bragged about wanting to have sex with Roethlisberger, then told friends she hoped she was pregnant. A year later, after she’d run up a lot of medical bills due to hospitalizations over another situation, she came up with this rape accusation–with no corroborating evidence–and sued Roethlisberger and her colleagues for $3 million.
    In the current case, the police have already said it was not a rape, but a case of “sexual manipulation.” That hasn’t been defined yet, but it may mean groping, grabbing, etc. The police have yet to file any charges, so why don’t you wait until there’s a trial and conviction before preaching to the rest of us about how we should react.
    I’m disappointed at Ben’s carelessness and immaturity. I’m disgusted at people that damn a man when they don’t have a single fact and those that pretend to be taking some moral high ground when all they’re doing is bashing a rival team.

  42. @ Deb – you are making too much sense for most of PFT’s readers to be able to keep up with or comprehend.
    :/ =my face when CincyAllDaWay tries to make a point, but doesn’t realize that one allegation is a rape and the other is a sexual assault. Typical intelligence level of Bengals fans.

  43. @i’m president charlie!
    Thanks. Have any of these people even bothered to read the PFT articles about McNulty bragging she hoped she was pregnant with a Little Ben? Not exactly a typical post-rape reaction. People need to get a grip and let the Milledgeville authorities finish their investigation before jumping to conclusions.

  44. Read it Florio:
    (b) Other crimes, wrongs, or acts
    “Evidence of other crimes, wrongs, or acts is not admissible to prove the character of a person in order to show action in conformity therewith. It may, however, be admissible for other purposes, such as proof of motive, opportunity, intent, preparation, plan, knowledge, identity, or absence of mistake or accident…”
    Rule 404(b) has NEVR been interpreted as allowing acts”subsequent to” to prove motive, intent, opportunity, preparation or plan!!!.

  45. @Terry . . . .
    Maybe you should read it again. Does the word “prior” appear in there anywhere? “Other” does not mean prior or subsequent; it means prior AND subsequent.
    Why should the first person in a chain of misconduct be prevented from introducing evidence of later misconduct? Under your theory, the woman in Georgia could use the Nevada case, but the woman in Nevada can’t use the Georgia case. That’s simply not fair.
    One of the few things I vividly recall from law school is the explanation that Rule 404(b) routinely is called the “prior bad acts” rule even though the plain language of the rule isn’t limited to “prior” bad acts.

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