New Orleans (AP) - Rape charges pending against an Easton. Pa., man and two other Southern University football players will be dropped because the victim and two other witnesses at their original trial lied, the Orleans Parish district attorney said Monday.
Two others were acquitted last year of raping a 25-year-old New Iberta housewife in a downtown hotel after the 1982 Bayou Classic football game between Southern and rival Grambling State.
District Attorney Harry Connick said Monday he would not prosecute the charges still pending against lineman Linwood Hamilton. 23, of Easton, Pa: quarterback Herbert Coleman Jr., 20 and wide receiver Thomas Hudson, 21 both of Houston.
Punter Kim Davis of Houston, were acquitted at their original trial.
All five originally were charged with aggravated rape, a felony that carries a mandatory penalty of life imprisonment.
Hamilton, who played out his eligibility in the 1982 season, was convicted of attempted forcible rape but was granted a new trial by Criminal District Judge Dennis Waldron after a distant cousin of the victim admitted she lied at the woman's request.
Hamilton was to have gone to trial for a second time March 22 on the lesser charge, which carries a maximum penalty of 10 years imprisonment.
Waldoron declared a mistrial after the jury could reach no verdict regarding Coleman and Hudson. He ordered them to stand trial for aggravated rape at the same time Hamilton was retried.
Cornick's office reopened its investigation, however, when Lattia Lynn Alpough disclosed in January that she lied when she said she had been with her cousin for three hours before the alleged rape.
A spokeswoman for Connick said the charges would be formally dissolved at a Tuesday hearing.
New Orleans - District Judge Dennis Waldron says he will consider in secret the request for a new trial for Linwood Hamilton, the former Southern University football player convicted of attempted rape in a sensational trial last summer.
Waldron also sealed Hamilton's motion requesting the new trial, and wouldn't say why. Hamilton, 22, was one of five Southern University players accused of forcing a New Iberia woman into a post-game orgy after Souther's defeat of arch-rival Grambling in New Orleans in 1982. Two were auitted and two are scheduled for another trial on March 22, because the original jury could not agree on a sentence for them. None of them denied participating in the sexual encounter, but they maintained the woman was a willing - even eager - partner in group sex.
A former Southern University football team lineman has lost his first bid to be released on bond while he awaits sentencing on an attempted rape conviction.
Criminal District Judge Dennis Waldron refused Monday to set Bond for Linwood Hamilton of Easton.
Another hearing was scheduled for Sept. 22. Hamilton of Easton.
Another hearing was scheduled for Sept. 22. Hamilton, who exhausted his college football eligibility last season, could be sentenced to a maximum of 20 years in jail.
Hamilton and four teammates were accused of gang-raping a 25-year-old New Iberia woman at a New Orleans hotel following the Jaguar's victory over rival Grambling State University in the annual Bayou Classic Nov. 28, 1982.
Hamilton, who was accused of masterminding the assault, was convicted of attempted forcible rape Aug. 12 after an eight-day trial. A jury, however, was unable to agree on aggravated rape charges against the five players.
Two of Hamilton's teammates - punter Kim Ray Davis and receiver Earnest Belin - were acquitted of the charges. A mistrial was declared in the cases of Thomas Hudson and Herman Coleman Jr. after the jury was unable to reach verdicts.
Orleans Parish District Attorney Harry Connick was expected to announce in court Friday whether he would retry Hudson and Coleman.
The assault victim told police she was forced into a room at the Marriott Hotel several hours ager the Bayou Classic and repeatedly raped by five players. Several of the players testified during the trial that the woman was willing to have sex with them and that she tried to recruit a friend to join her.
NEW ORLEANS, March 8 — Five Southern University football players have pleaded not guilty to charges of raping a 25-year-old woman. Criminal District Court Judge Dennis Waldron scheduled a trial May 23 so that the proceeding would not interfere with the players' spring semester at school in Baton Rouge, which ends May 21.
On Feb. 24, an Orleans Parish grand jury returned aggravated rape indictments against Tom Hudson, a defensive end; Ernest Bell, a receiver; Herman Coleman, a quarterback; Kim Ray Davis, a punter, and Linwood Hamilton, a nose guard.
An announcement that the New Orleans district attorney would drop pending rape charges against three Southern University football players relieved the young men, but not their lawyer.
One of the young men, the lawyer for the five and their coach were contacted yesterday after Dist. Atty. Harry Connick announced the charges were being dropped because three witnesses at their trial, including the 25-year- old victim, lied.
Connick insisted "a crime did occur and was rightfully prosecuted," but said the perjured testimony destroyed the witnesses' credibility for future proceedings.
But the players' lawyer, Peter Castano of New Orleans, objected and said additional civil suits would be filed for millions of dollars in damages. He said the purported victim - and others - would be named as defendants.
"As far as I'm concerned, this press release says absolutely nothing at all," said Castano. "Quite the contrary, it states on their letterhead that a rape still occurred.
New Orleans (UPI)
A $3 million defamation suite has been filed by two Southern University football players against a woman who accused them of raping her at a New Orleans hotel last year.
The players were among five Southern athletes charged in the November 1982 incident at the Marriott Hotel hours after Southern defeated aarchrival Grambling in the annual Bayou Classic at the Superdome.
One player was convicted in August, a retrial was scheduled for two others and the athletes who filed the suit were acquitted.
The woman and her husband also filed a $610,000 suit against the Marriott chain, Southern University in Baton Rouge and the five football players.
The woman claims the hotel and the university negligently permitted the football players to roam the halls of the hotel while in a state of ribaldry. She also charged the players rapted her.
The $3 million defamation suit was filied by Ernest Bell, 20, of Houston and Kim Ray Davis, 20. of Atlanta, who were acquited of aggravated rape Aug, 12 alter a six-duy trial.
Bell and Davis claim the woman subjected them to humiliation and exposed them to public hatred with her untrue tale or rape, theft and violence. They are seeking $1.5 million each as complnsatlon for loss of reputation.
Peter Castano, their atturney, said the men's primary reason for filing the suit is "to clear their good name. These kids didn't do anything."
The woman and her husband filed their suit under fictitious names Jane and Gus Smith. State law permits rape victims to file suits under fitltlous names to protec their privacy.
Jane Smith asked for $410,000 for physical and mental suffering, public embarrassment and damage damage to her marrlage. Gus Smith seeks $200,00 for his mental anguish and the embarrassmcnt and the loss of his "Wife's consortium."
His three-decade reign as Orleans Parish district attorney has been raked over by U.S. Supreme Court justices and rued by convicts freed after a decade or longer in prison. Just don't ask Harry Connick Sr. to take it lying down.
To Connick, who turned 86 last week, the numbers speak for themselves -- often in sports analogies.
"My reputation is based on something other than a case, or two cases or five cases, or one interception or 20 interceptions. Look at the rest of my record. I have more yards than anybody," Connick said.
"Would you make it the legacy of Hank Aaron or Babe Ruth that they struck out a lot?" he went on. "I have to look at myself and say this is who I am. This is what I've done. Perfect? No. But I've done nothing to go to confession about in that office. At all."
During Harry Connick's tenure, Orleans Parish District Attorney's Office regularly suppressed crucial evidence in cases, costing taxpayers millions of dollars, sending innocent men to prison and exacerbating the crime problem in New Orleans.
This report examines the ongoing problem of evidence suppression by prosecutors in Orleans Parish. Innocence Project New Orleans garnered statistics based upon all 36 death sentences in Orleans Parish between 1973 and 2002, the tenure of Harry Connick. Additionally, the report examines non death penalty cases by reviewing 25 non-capital cases in which allegations of evidence suppression were brought to court. Determinations of evidence suppression in this report are not based on a subjective review of the case files, but rather on published court opinions and court documents.
Height: 6-2 Weight: 265 lbs.
Born: May 14, 1959 in Philadelphia, PA (Age 54)
College: North Carolina St., Southern (school history)
Weighted Career AV (100-95-...): 0 (14861st overall since 1950)
Hamiliton Tries To Assemble Pieces Of His Life Through Football
West Chester. Pa. (AP) -
As a youth, Linwood Hamilton was a child-abuse victim and a runaway. As a young man, he spent four months in jail before he was cleared of an attempted rape charge. Now, through football he hopes to put his life back together.
"It would be the ultimate to make this team." Hamilton said Tuesday at the Philadelphia Eagles training camp at West Chester University, where he is trying out as a free-agent nose tackle.
"I;m poor. I don't have any money." he said."I've got nine bucks in the bank. I'm hungry. If I don't make the team, I'll be back on the street, working construction or something.
"I want to make the team bad. I don't mind practicing, working hard. I';; play if I have a broken leg. I want it bad."
It won't be easy for the 6-2, 265 pound Hamilton to make the eagles' roster. He must beat out veterans Kenny Clarks and Harvey Armstrong. But nothing in life has come easy for him.
"He's typical of a lot of our kids," said Michael Danjezek, Executive director of the Children's home in Easton, where Hamilton lived during his high school years.
"They all have reasons to give up on life , but we try to point out the positive. We tell them they should make the best of it.
Hamilton was born in Philadelphia but met his father only once. When he was 2 1/2, his mother sent him to live in Grand Junrtion, Mich.with an aunt and uncle. He still carries scars on his hands, head and back from beatings he said began when he was four.
"They used to beat me with those slicks that you use to put together Army cots ," he satd. "I kept running away because I was getting beat all the time."
At Age five, he was placed in his first boys' home , then was sent back to live with his real mother.
But the beatings started again, he said. "One of my aunt's boyfriends used to beat me," he said . "He put me in the bed and beat me on the chest. My mother just sat there and watched .
"1 can still see Mom sometimes. She Is trying to make things better. But I'll never forgive her for treating me like that. I have a little girl that's four, and 1 would never hit her. You don't have to hit a kid to get the message across."
When he was eight or nine, he began running away again. He was too afraid to report his mother to the pollee, who would find him and bring him home .
Before he was old enough for high school, Hamilton said, he had been shuttled to four Philadelphia boys' homes plus one in York, and one in Mount Holly, N.J.
"Some of these places were rough," he said. "1 saw guys get raped. I was raped when I was eight or nine ."
"They'd move me to a new home when 1 was too old," Hamilton said. "But I only got kicked out of one . I threatened one of the people there with a screwdriver. He tried to take away my stereo because I was playing It loud, and I threw a temper tantrum."
The police were brought in to settle the matter. and Hamilton ended up at the Children's Home of Easton.
"We agreed to take him, mainly, because I'm the same size he Is," Danjczek, the home's director, said half-jokingly.
At Easton , things began looking up for Hamilton, then 16. He enrolled in Wilson High school and became a star running back. With the help of special tutors. he learned to read.
"The people at Easton really helped me," he said. ''They were great."
He received a football scholarship at North Carolina State, but was forced to leave afler two seasons because he lacked the academic skills.
When several North Carolina State assistant coaches followed Bo Rein to Louisiana State University, they got Hamilton enrolled at nearby Southern University. He had grown Into a defenslve lineman by then, and his skills at nose tackle had earned him second-team All-Southwestern Athletic Conference honors In 1982. But trouble struck again.
Hamlton and four teammates were accused of raping a woman in New Orleans on Nov. 28. 1982, after a game between Southern and Grambling. The case went to court last August.
The defendants testified they had sexual lntercourse with the woman but that she had been willing, said Hamilton's attorney, Peter Castano of New Orleans. Two of the defendants were acquitted and two others were granted a mistrial.
Hamilton was convicted of attempted forcible raoe and faced a possible prison sentence of 20 years.
"I was In jail with a guy who killed his roommate. . .. " Hamilton said. "Another guy had killed his parents."
After four months In the Orleans Parish jail. Hamilton was released on bond. Eventually. several prosecution witnesses recanted their testimony, Castano sold, and the charge agalnst Hamilton was dropped In February.
After his release, Hamilton had his agent contact the Eagles. Lynn Stiles, the team's personnel director, made sure Hamilton had been acquitted of all charges. then gave him a workout and signed hlrn to a free-agent contract In June.
Before tralnlng camp oppned, Hamilton got himself a room near the EasLon Chlldren's Home and worked himself Into shape. The people there are his closest friends.
" I don't want people feeling sorry for me," Hamilton said. "The majority of the homes really took care of me."
He thinks his chances with the Eagles are good If he stays healthy. "I don't fear anyone," he said. "I'm ready. Being on the streets has made me tough."
As a youth, Linwood Hamilton was a child-abuse victim and a runaway. As a young man, he spent four months in jail before he was cleared of an attempted rape charge. Now, through football, he hopes to put his life back together.
A 6-foot-2, 265-pound free-agent nose tackle, Hamilton is trying out with the Philadelphia Eagles at their training camp in West Chester.
"I'm poor. I don't have any money," he said yesterday. "I've got nine bucks in the bank. I'm hungry. If I don't make the team, I'll be back on the street, working construction or something. I want to make the team bad... I'll play if I have a broken leg."
Hamilton was born in Philadelphia but met his father only once. When he was 2 1/2 , his mother sent him to live in Grand Junction, Mich., with an aunt and uncle, who, he says, "used to beat me with those sticks that you use to put together Army cots. I kept running away because I was getting beat."
Before he was old enough for high school, Hamilton said, he had been in five boys' homes, "Some of these places were rough," he said. "I saw guys get raped. I was raped when I was 8 or 9."
He said he "got kicked out" of one boys' home because he "threatened one of the people there with a screwdriver. He tried to take away my stereo because I was playing it loud."
The police finally settled the matter, and Hamilton, then 16, ended up at the Children's Home of Easton. While there, his life improved. He enrolled at Wilson High and became a star running back. He received a football scholarship at North Carolina State, but was forced to leave after two seasons because he was academically deficient. He later went to Southern University in Baton Rouge and was a second-team All-Southwestern Athletic Conference nose tackle in 1982. But trouble struck again.
Hamilton and four teammates were accused of raping a woman in New Orleans on Nov. 28, after a game between Southern and Grambling. The case went to court last Augest. Hamilton was convicted of attempted forcible rape and faced a possible 20-year jail term.
After four months in the Orleans Parish Jail, Hamilton was released on bond. Eventually, several prosecution witnesses recanted their testimony and the charge against Hamilton was dropped in February.
Hamilton Connors Pittsburgh 1925 - 1925 E 1
They arrived at the front door of the Mount Laurel Hilton in cabs and airport limousines. Most looked bewildered, and some were so apprehensive that they refused to even identify themselves to reporters.
But if the NFL players strike is not resolved soon and owners field strike teams for games beginning Oct. 4, the names of these largely anonymous free agents willing to cross the Eagles' picket line will be found on game-day programs, statistic sheets and game accounts.
Yesterday was check-in day for the athletes who will wear green jerseys and winged helmets should football games be played with nonunion players. These prospective players spent the day at the hotel taking physical
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Lenwood ''Hard Rock'' Hamilton, a 380-pound pro wrestler with a gold front tooth, was demonstrating a chop to the throat of one of his heavyweight pals, a goateed, fellow 380-pounder known as Tidal Wave.
Hard Rock said Tidal Wave was too big to put in his finishing move, the Ghetto-Whopper.
That's when Hard Rock shoves an opponent into the ropes, catches him on the rebound and - if the guy is under 300 pounds - tosses him back over his head.
''When I put the Ghetto Whopper on you,'' Hard Rock said, ''you know you're gonna fly. You might see Sputnik.''
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