Friday, November 17, 2017

No battery charges against FSU’s Josh Ball; police continue to investigate harassment complaint


Authorities declined to file battery charges against Florida State offensive lineman Josh Ball last month but are still investigating a harassment complaint filed against him by a Lithia woman.

Incident reports released Wednesday by the Tallahassee Police Department revealed more details on accusations that the Seminoles’ starting left tackle struck FSU student Sandra Sellers during their year and a half relationship. Sellers, 20, has filed for an injunction for protection against dating violence, with a hearing scheduled for today in Leon County.

Sellers reported two incidents of alleged battery to Tallahassee police in September. She alleged that the 6-foot-8, 325-pound Ball slapped the 5-foot-4, 120-pound Sellers in December and pushed and smacked her on April 1 in an incident that bloodied her knee. Sellers showed police a photograph from that day with a red handprint on her thigh, according to an incident report dated Oct. 17.

Sellers told police in December and again in September that she didn’t report the incidents because "she did not want to ruin Ball’s football career" or his scholarship, according to the report. She said she changed her mind out of fear.

Ball denied hurting Sellers in a September interview with police at Doak Campbell Stadium. Ball told authorities that Sellers previously showed him the photo with the handprint and said "she was going to blame it on him and get him in trouble," according to the incident report.

Ball’s roommate, defensive back Kameron House, told police he never saw Ball hurt Sellers. Ball also showed police a video where Sellers struck Ball repeatedly and threatened to "ruin his life" if he would not let her leave, according to the report.

The State Attorney’s Office reviewed the case but declined to press charges "based on the time delay in reporting, prior requests not to prosecute and conflicting statements."

Tallahassee police have an open investigation into another complaint from Sellers. She alleges that Ball shared a sexually explicit video of them without her permission with someone, who then posted it on social media.

Ball, a redshirt freshman from Virginia, has appeared in every game during FSU’s 3-5 season. He is scheduled to make his fifth consecutive start at left tackle Saturday at No. 4 Clemson.

Attorneys for Ball and Sellers have not commented on the case.

BASKETBALL CORRUPTION: Auburn fired associate head coach Chuck Person, who has been indicted on federal bribery, conspiracy and fraud charges. The university announced the move a day after Person and seven others were indicted by a federal grand jury in New York. The 53-year-old Person had been suspended without pay after his arrest in September. His attorney, Theresa Trzaskoma, said Tuesday that Person didn’t commit any crimes. Person allegedly received $91,500 in bribes to steer Auburn players to Pittsburgh financial adviser Marty Blazer when they turn pro. Person told Blazer he gave $18,500 of that to the families of two Auburn players, according to a federal complaint. Auburn is indefinitely holding out center Austin Wiley and forward Danjel Purifoy, citing "potential eligibility issues."

Information from Times wires was used in this report.


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