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Nashville authorities: 4 former Vanderbilt football players indicted on rape charges

7:39 AM, Aug 10, 2013   |    comments
Dec 31, 2012; Nashville, TN, USA; Vanderbilt Commodores players celebrate after defeating the North Carolina State Wolfpack 38-24 in the Music City Bowl at LP Field. Credit: Jim Brown-USA TODAY Sports
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(CNN) -- Four former Vanderbilt University football players have been indicted on multiple criminal counts in connection with the alleged rape of a 21-year-old student in a campus dormitory in June, according to authorities in Tennessee.

Charged are Brandon Vandenburg, 20, of Indio, California; Corey Batey, 19, of Nashville; Brandon Banks, 19, of Brandywine, Maryland; and Jaborian McKenzie, 19, of Woodville, Mississippi, according to the Nashville Metropolitan Police Department.

Police said each of the four men is charged with five counts of aggravated rape and two counts of aggravated sexual battery. Vandenburg is also charged with one count of tampering with evidence and one count of unlawful photography.

The former Commodore players are charged with raping an unconscious female inside Vandenburg's dorm room on June 23. The alleged rape happened in the Gillette House dormitory, police said.

In a statement issued Friday the university said "Our first thoughts are for the victim, a Vanderbilt student, and we convey to her and her family our deepest sympathies and sorrow. We will continue to offer her all of our services and support."

The incident first came to light when university officials checking the dorm's hallway surveillance recordings regarding an unrelated situation observed unusual behavior by the defendants, police said. That prompted a notification to campus police on June 26.

That same day, Vanderbilt University Police called Nashville police into the investigation.
Four days later the four men were dismissed from the football team and suspended from the university amid an investigation. The university and city police announced the dismissals but did not identify the players at that time.

Friday's indictments come after what police said was a nonstop investigation and "tedious and painstaking work" by detectives over the last six weeks.

Late Friday afternoon police officers arrested Batey at his Nashville home. He was taken to the hospital for a mandatory blood test before being transported to Metro Jail, where he is being held on $350,000 bond, according to Public Information Officer Don Aaron.

Vandenburg, Banks and McKenzie were not in custody Friday night, Aaron said.

The university said in its statement that its highest priority is student safety and security, and the university is focused on preventing any future incident like this on campus.

"The charges brought today against the four former Vanderbilt football players allege conduct which is abhorrent and will never be tolerated," the statement said.

An attorney identified in local media as Batey's lawyer could not be reached Friday night. The whereabouts of the other three could not be determined, not could it be determined Friday night whether they had retained attorneys.

Leslie Holland, CNN

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