A sordid legal matter involving a former Auburn football player is now very publicly playing out for all to witness.
The attorney Landon Rice, who has been accused of rape but not charged, issued a statement earlier this week in which he labeled the allegations as “false” and that his client has been “vilified” and “unfairly treated” because of them. In response to that statement, the lawyer for the unnamed 19-year-old allegedly raped by Rice released a series of text messages between the player and alleged victim in which the former apologized to the latter on multiple occasions.
From the Opelika-Auburn News:
Hey so I know this is out of the blue but this has just been on my mind a lot since last week,” the woman wrote to Rice on April 18. “When I came over after Greek sing I said no to having sex. I didn’t say it just to hear my own voice, I said it because I meant it. So the fact that you didn’t respect me enough to listen really hurts. I know you knew better than that,” the woman texted.
“I’m saying this because I want you to know that what you did was wrong. Whether it was 5 seconds or it was 20 minutes, it was still wrong. So I’m texting you about this for two reasons. One because the next time you are in that position, listen and do not make another girl feel disrespected like I do. Two because I want you to just leave me alone from now on.”
Rice responded, saying “Yes I knew it was wrong and I am sorry. There is nothing I can do to make it right. I am really sorry. I should have never put you in that position, I was just in the moment. That is not the person kind of person I am [sic]. (Redacted name) I am really sorry.”
The woman responded by saying she believed Rice but wanted him to leave her alone and he apologized again, saying: “Yes I will can we just put this behind us and don’t tell anyone and I’ll leave you alone. Once again I am really sorry and feel terrible about it.
Subsequent text exchanges between the two grew testy as the woman essentially begged Rice to stop contacting her via texts and social media messages. After promising to leave her alone as long as they “just let it go and never bring it up again,” the woman responded “Why? Because you don’t want it getting around and possibly affecting football???”
Rice again apologized, saying “I know that it was wrong and I hope you know I’m sorry and I think about how wrong it was a lot.”
The woman’s final text message, at least of the ones provided by her lawyer, was the most heated.
“It’d be in your best interest to stay the (expletive) away from me,” the woman wrote. “You’re a piece of (expletive) to me Landon. Do not come near anything involving my sorority. Stay away from me.”
A temporary order of protection has been granted to the alleged victim and a hearing is scheduled for October 4, although Rice’s attorneys are seeking to have that order dismissed.
Following the Week 2 win over Arkansas State, head coach Gus Malzahn confirmed that the tight end had left his football program for what he described as “personal reasons.” The four-star 2016 recruit was an early enrollee who participated in spring practice earlier this year. His brother, Logan Rice, plays wide receiver for the Tigers.