Police: Accuser stopped cooperating

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- After the attorney for the accuser in the sexual assault case involving Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston released a statement Wednesday condemning the investigation by the Tallahassee Police Department, interim Chief Tom Coe responded at a news conference Wednesday night.

Coe confirmed the accuser had stopped cooperating with police in February.

"In February 2013, the case was classified as open, but inactive, when the victim in the case broke off contact with TPD, and her attorney indicated she did not want to move forward at that time," Coe said.

Coe did not specifically contradict any of the claims made in the accuser's statement but said, "There are many statements being made daily, some of which are factual, some are not factual. We can't go into detail on that tonight, but there will be a point in time when we can comment on those issues."

In a statement released to the Tampa Bay Times on Wednesday, the accuser's attorney said, "It was never the intent of the victim or the family for this to become public," but went on to provide a scathing review of the police's handling of the case.

The alleged victim initially reported the incident Dec. 7, 2012. Coe said police investigated the incident, taking witness testimony and collecting evidence.

According to Winston's attorney, Tim Jansen, police approached him about the case in February but soon after assured him the case was no longer being investigated. Jansen said he reported that to both Winston and Florida State.

When records requests from multiple media outlets were made to Tallahassee police last week, investigators re-examined the case and forwarded it to the state attorney's office. William Meggs, the state attorney for the Second Judicial Circuit, is currently reviewing the case and will decide whether charges will be brought against any potential suspect.

In Wednesday's statement, the accuser said police urged her not to pursue the case, saying Detective Scott Angulo told her attorney, "Tallahassee was a big football town and the victim needs to think long and hard before proceeding against him because she will be raked over the coals and her life will be made miserable."

The statement also said police failed to do a proper investigation, did not collect blood work or DNA samples from Winston and refused to interview Winston's roommate, who the accuser says witnessed the attack. The statement also criticized police for approaching Winston's attorney in February with details of the case.

Winston met with media Wednesday, but Florida State athletic department staff would not allow him to answer any questions relating to the investigation. His status with the team has not changed, according to Florida State, and he is expected to start Saturday's game against Idaho.

Meggs said his office has interviewed several witnesses but the timetable for a decision on whether charges will be filed remains vague.

"When we can say more about this case, we certainly will," Coe said Wednesday. "And we look forward to that day. We hope to move it forward as quickly as we can in coordination with the state attorney and bring closure to it."