Soul Players Questioned in Sex Case

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Five members of the Philadelphia Soul football team are being investigated in connection with the alleged rape of a 23-year-old woman in Kansas City.

The 5 members of the Soul football team in question and General Manager Rich Lisk were expected to return after midnight due to airline mechanical problems. However, when the overnight flight from Kansas City arrived in Philadelphia International Airport, members of the team were not on the passenger list. There was no word Wednesday morning when those members of the Philadelphia Soul were due back.

Action News talked to Rich Lisk earlier Tuesday by phone from Kansas City about the serious allegations being made against his football players by a 23-year-old Kansas City woman. Kansas City police spokesman Captain Rich Lockhart says this is still very much an active investigation. Capt Rich Lockhart/Kansas City Police: "If something should develop as far as us being able to identify who was involved in this, then certainly we'd submit that info to the prosecutor." According to authorities, a 23-year-old Kansas City woman claims to have met three members of the Philadelphia Soul football team at the Empire Room bar. After the nightclub closed, she rendezvoused with the players at a nearby gas station where she agreed to join them at their hotel room at the Hilton's president hotel. Lockhart: "There were two others inside of the room. At some point, she was forced to have sex with one of the men while two others held her down." The woman then tells police that one of the five football players later tried to calm her down and walked her to the lobby to catch a cab home. After notifying police, authorities were able to catch the Soul team's bus before it left where five players volunteered to go to police headquarters and give a statement. Lockhart: "They are cooperating with us, they are not under arrest. Right now, they're providing information to us about what they know voluntarily." The players, who have not been identified because they have not been charged, were later released pending the outcome of the investigation. Before boarding a flight for Philadelphia, team General Manager Rich Lisk gave us this statement by phone: "The players are cooperating with authorities as witnesses about an incident that occurred at our hotel. I can't elaborate because it is a legal matter, however I emphasize my players were cooperating as witnesses not as alleged wrongdoers. However, the Kansas City police spokesman says if they obtain DNA or other evidence that substantiates the alleged rape, the players could be charged:" Lockhart: "The person who had sex with the woman against her will could potentially be charged with something. The two who held her down could as well. It would be a prosecutor decision as far as the other two who were in the room and didn't do anything as to whether they would face any charges." The investigation is ongoing and no one has been charged. The five football players and the general manager expected to arrive from Kansas City in the early morning hours.

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