UCSB soccer player Eric Frimpong pleaded not guilty to charges of rape and sexual assault at his arraignment yesterday, during which his attorney announced the results of DNA testing from one of the alleged victims.
Frimpong’s attorney, Robert Sanger, said DNA evidence collected from the first accuser did not match that of his client. Sanger, along with prosecuting attorney Mary Barron, has been abiding by a voluntary gag order, but broke his silence on Tuesday to announce the test results. Information concerning possible DNA evidence from the second alleged victim was not discussed.
“I take the position that it is not appropriate to comment on cases, but I am making an exception in this case,” he said.
Barron made no comment on the matter.
Sanger said the Santa Barbara Sheriff’s Dept. released a statement in February, immediately following the allegations against Frimpong, stating that investigators were confident DNA evidence would point to Frimpong. Sanger also said the Sheriff’s Dept. did not report that Frimpong had given his DNA voluntarily.
“I don’t believe in trying cases in the press,” he said. “But it’s a fair conclusion to the sheriff’s initial report.”
After hearing Frimpong’s plea, Santa Barbara Superior Court Judge Brian Hill scheduled a preliminary hearing setting for May 3 at 8:30 a.m. Explaining the delay, Judge Hill said more evidence will come out in the next few weeks that could shed new light on the case. The actual preliminary hearing will take place within 10 court days of May 3.