Roethlisberger loses bid to move Nevada trial

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The Nevada Supreme Court today decided that a civil lawsuit accusing Ben Roethlisberger of sexual assault will be tried in the county where it was originally filed.

The attorney for a woman who claimed Mr. Roethlisberger assaulted her at a Lake Tahoe hotel in 2008 filed the original complaint in Reno, which sits in the district court of Washoe County, where another of the defendants owns a house.

Mr. Roethlisberger filed a motion for a change of venue, asking that the case be moved to Douglas County -- home to the Harrah's hotel in Lake Tahoe where the alleged incident occurred.

The district court in Reno denied the change of venue, and Mr. Roethlisberger appealed to the Nevada Supreme Court citing as his reasons convenience and that none of the defendants actually resides in Washoe County.

The justices, who sat en banc, issued their opinion today, finding that Mr. Roethlisberger did not have standing to appeal on residency for the other co-defendants. As for convenience, the court found that the difference in travel times to either Washoe or Douglas counties is minimal.

"And while Roethlisberger may receive a speedier trial in Douglas County, it is not an abuse of discretion for the district court to conclude that the ends of justice are adequately served by keeping venue in Washoe County and would not be furthered by a change of venue to Douglas County," the justices wrote.

The lawsuit was filed against Mr. Roethlisberger in August 2009. A 33-year-old woman who worked at Harrah's Lake Tahoe as a VIP hostess accused him of sexually assaulting her in July 2008 during a celebrity golf tournament.

More details in tomorrow's Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.


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