The lawyer for Jameis Winston released a statement on Sunday criticizing the Florida state attorney’s office for public comments about the probe into the Florida State quarterback and the way they’ve handled the investigation so far.
In a statement sent to the Democrat Sunday evening, Jansen said he was troubled by Meggs’ decision to engage in news interviews that included “extrajudicial statements about his ongoing investigation” and called on him to refrain from such comments. In the article, Meggs also said too much media attention has been focused on Winston and stressed that rights of “the victim” in the case — not just those of the Heisman Trophy hopeful — must be protected.
“Such extrajudicial public statements at this early point in his investigation raise concerns in the minds of Mr. Winston and the public that Mr. Meggs may not be conducting the objective, fair, and unbiased investigation which is the right of every person involved in the criminal justice system,” Jansen wrote.
Jansen’s comments came after State Attorney Willie Meggs told the local paper that:
“There’s nothing like being fresh on a case and walking in and saying, ‘what happened last night,’” Meggs told the AP. “Now they’ve been talking to lawyers, they’ve been talking to each other and getting their stories together. … People had 11 months to decide what they’re going to say.”
Jansen noted noted that the Tallahassee police could’ve made progress on the case much earlier.
“In December 2012 the witnesses were available, and in February law enforcement chose not to interview them,” Jansen said. “Their story has not changed.”
The state attorney’s office expects a decision to be made in the investigation in the next few weeks. Obviously, any kind of charges against Winston would put a serious crimp in FSU’s national title chance and likely cripple Winston’s Heisman hopes.