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Report: James Franklin reached out to alleged rape victim at Vanderbilt

James Franklin

Former Vanderbilt head coach James Franklin, now at Penn State, has been accused of reaching out a to an alleged rape victim days after an alleged sexual assault that led to the dismissal of four football players at Vanderbilt. Franklin, according to documents submitted by the defense of one of the former players, contacted the alleged victim during a medical examination.

Per The Tennessean;

Referring to records, the attorneys said the victim was contacted by Franklin and [former director of performance enhancement Dwight] Galt during a medical examination four days after the rape to explain “that they cared about her because she assisted them with recruiting.”

It went on to say that at some point, “Coach Franklin called her in for a private meeting and told her he wanted her to get fifteen pretty girls together and form a team to assist with the recruiting even though he knew it was against the rules. He added that all the other colleges did it.”

What Franklin knowing the victim means for the outcome of the case is unknown. It is also unknown if the alleged victim’s role with the football program carries any influence on how the case was handled and investigated. However, if Franklin had a role in organizing a hostess program, that is a new development in the entire story.

What is probably clear is Penn State has either done an extremely thorough vetting process and determined there is absolutely nothing to be concerned with in the long-term, or the school totally swung and missed on the biggest black cloud that could potentially linger over the new head coach. Given the position Penn State has been in since 2011, the margin for error is barely existent. Franklin has steered away from commenting on the Vanderbilt situation since he was hired by Penn State, and Penn State officials have previously stated they hired Franklin with great confidence.

The defense team also states a good amount of evidence from the investigation has disappeared, which is leading the defense to ask for a dismissal of the case or for prosecutors to be reprimanded. Evidence said to be missing includes text messages and phone call records on the alleged victim’s phone, social media posts, police interview records, DNA test results and more.

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14 Responses to “Report: James Franklin reached out to alleged rape victim at Vanderbilt”
  1. canetic says: Apr 29, 2014 5:47 PM

    Nothing to worry about. The folks at Penn State are excellent judges of character.

  2. dhardy8207 says: Apr 29, 2014 5:52 PM

    “Evidence said to be missing includes text messages and phone call records on the alleged victim’s phone, social media posts, police interview records, DNA test results and more.”


    Well damn…..thats pretty much everything they need to get a guilty verdict. How could all of that go missing without some help from the police department?

  3. auburntigers34 says: Apr 29, 2014 6:02 PM

    He cared about her because she helped with recruiting? sounds like they found the perfect guy to replace Paterno.

  4. bigbuckeye76 says: Apr 29, 2014 6:22 PM

    Well….at least it didn’t happen in the showers.

  5. dmvtransplant says: Apr 29, 2014 6:55 PM

    I don’t get why anyone is coming down on Franklin, unless you can prove he got rid of the evidence somehow, he’s in the clear?

    I mean the DA for the case went on record for his behalf. I hate to use the OJ metaphor, but if you’re not found guilt in a court of law that makes you innocent, Case Close. So charge the guy or move on.

  6. auburntigers34 says: Apr 29, 2014 6:58 PM

    How can you NOT come down on Franklin? The victim was obviously a recruiting hostess and that seems to be his only motivation for having any concern for what happened to her.

  7. dmvtransplant says: Apr 29, 2014 7:09 PM

    @ auburntigers34

    Then charge him and prove it in a court of law or move to a country that just convicts people without trials, I hear Russia is great this time of year.

  8. auburntigers34 says: Apr 29, 2014 7:17 PM

    What do charges have to do with whether or not PSU made the worst possible hire that they could have made, less than 3 years removed from the biggest scandal in the history of sports?

    It says a lot about where there priorities are,imo.

    But if you’re so hung up on charges, did you totally miss the section of the article that mentioned all of the missing evidence? It sounds like a cover up for a sexual crime….not at all unlike what happened with Sandusky.

  9. iownyou2 says: Apr 29, 2014 7:21 PM

    how did I know I could come here and find this story as front page news basically convicting Franklin and bashing PSU. This is back page news, this story will go nowhere. Not saying that female recruiters aren’t common at most schools but this story screams a girl crying rape for not getting something she wanted. Those who disagree are just naïve.

  10. auburntigers34 says: Apr 29, 2014 7:28 PM

    iownyou2 says:
    Apr 29, 2014 7:21 PM

    did you get to look over all of the evidence before it was “lost”?

  11. scpausa says: Apr 29, 2014 7:36 PM

    In light of past scandals at PSU can the University, Fans, Former Players, Current Players and Future players afford to have a head coach that thinks it is OK to contact a victim of a SEX CRIME and approach her about “recruiting fifteen pretty girls” KNOWING that it VIOLATES NCAA rules? What makes this reprehensible is that now when asked about this PSU and Coach Franklin say, “No comment.” Has Penn State learned its lesson? Maybe when the sanctions that follow Franklin from Vanderbilt get applied here at Penn State in addition to what are currently in place Penn State may better understand that character counts and that there should NEVER be a rush to find a new head coach…

  12. bigd88 says: Apr 29, 2014 7:54 PM

    Ok. I know most posters in the comment section of sports articles aren’t the brightest. But let’s try and walk through this slowly.

    The DEFENSE attorney is claiming that there is missing evidence. So in other words, the defense is arguing that there is evidence out there that exonerates Vandenburg (I call BS) and it was destroyed.
    So we’re saying Franklin was involved in a “cover up” to destroy evidence that WOULD PROVE HIS PLAYERS’ INNOCENCE? On what planet does that make sense.
    Ok so now that we know he didn’t cover up and destroy evidence…
    He contacted the victim 4 days later and stated that he cared about her because she had helped the program recruit before.
    So which is more likely:
    In the 4 day window after the rape, Franklin found this girl out of all the females on campus and told her to round up a bunch of pretty girls to recruit; the girl accepts, does recruiting work for Franklin, and is contacted again by Franklin who tells her he now cares for her.
    The victim was already working for Franklin as a recruiting hostess (most likely because she was hot and had 15 hot friends just like every other BCS program in the country does) prior to the rape. After the incident, Franklin finds out what happened and reaches out to tell her he cares about her based on their prior relationship. And kicks off the 4 players from the team immediately.

    I know, I know. It’s really fun and clever to say “James Franklin,” “Penn State,” and “rape” and make a really snarky comment at the bottom of an article and giggle to ourselves.
    But in reality, this is the most non-story ever. The guy reached out and told a rape victim he had a prior relationship with that he cared about her.

    Stop the presses.

  13. pat199192 says: Apr 29, 2014 7:57 PM

    I wouldn’t bash Franklin for this just yet since it hasn’t been proven he did anything wrong. I have a huge problem with the decision of psu to hire this guy with everything that has gone on there. They’re trying to get rid of a “win at all cost” reputation they got from young boys being raped in their showers. They don’t know he’s innocent anymore than we know he’s guilty. They didn’t care cause he’s their best chance at regaining their winning reputation.

  14. 6superbowls says: Apr 29, 2014 10:23 PM

    iownyou2. “This is back page news, this story will go nowhere.”

    Gonna go out on a limb and guess you thought the same when the Sandusky accusations made front page news as well? That’s why PSU got four years. Wrong mentality. Winning over the truth at any cost.

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