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Jury begins deliberating in ex-football player’s rape trial

June 22, 2017

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Jurors in the case of an ex-Vanderbilt University football player charged with rape will have to decide if he was bullied into the assault — and if so, whether that’s enough to clear him of charges.

Prosecutors and defense attorneys presented their closing arguments Thursday in the trial of Brandon Banks, one of four players charged with assaulting an unconscious female student in a dorm room in 2013. Jurors began deliberating Thursday afternoon.

Defense lawyer Mark Scruggs said Banks was under duress and abused by a team that required complete loyalty.

Assistant District Attorney Jan Norman called that claim an excuse made because there is video evidence of the assault.

Assistant District Attorney Roger Moore added that being made fun of isn’t a defense to a crime.

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