Since word first surfaced that Buccaneers quarterback Jameis Winston had been accused of groping a female Uber driver, it was known that Winston was with his former Florida State roommate, Ronald Darby, on the night in question. It was also reported at the time that a third man was with Winston and Darby, and today comes news that the third man was Brandon Banks, a former Vanderbilt football player who is now in prison for rape.
Banks’ attorney, Mark Scruggs, told ESPN that Banks was with Winston and Darby in a different Uber earlier in the evening, but that Winston went into the car alone with the driver who accused him of grabbing her crotch later in the night. Darby claimed the three of them were all in the Uber together and Winston was never alone with the woman. Scruggs said Banks doesn’t know what happened between Winston and the driver because Winston and the driver were the only people in the car.
“What happened after that, they cannot say,” Scruggs said of Banks and Darby.
The Uber incident took place in March of 2016, after Banks had been accused of raping a woman in a Vanderbilt dorm room but before he had gone on trial. Banks would later be convicted and sentenced to 15 years in prison. Winston himself was accused of raping a woman when he played at Florida State, and Winston’s decision to associate with another man who was awaiting trial on a rape charge will fuel questions about Winston’s judgment.
Scruggs said that the NFL tried to interview Banks in prison in the league’s investigation of Winston, but that Banks refused to talk to anyone without his lawyer present, and that the NFL never contacted Scruggs.