Ex-Vanderbilt Students Guilty on All Counts in Rape Trial

Cory Batey, Brandon Vandenburg face long prison sentences
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 27, 2015 6:50 PM CST
Ex-Vanderbilt Students Guilty on All Counts in Rape Trial
Cory Batey testifies in his own defense during his trial Monday, Jan. 26, 2015, in Nashville, Tenn.   (AP Photo/ Larry McCormack, Pool)

One stared ahead stoically and the other mouthed "No"—after a jury found two former Vanderbilt football players guilty on all counts in a rape trial that included shocking video and images of the assault, the AP reports. Cory Batey, 21, and Brandon Vandenburg, 21, each face decades-long sentences for their roles in the June 2013 rape of a former student in a Vanderbilt dormitory. Their lawyers claimed the men were too drunk to act responsibly, and partly blamed the Nashville school's loose culture of sex and binge drinking. But prosecutors disagreed: "That's the culture that you really saw here, their mindset that they can get away with anything," says a deputy DA in closing arguments. He called the culture argument a "red herring."

Batey was found guilty on seven counts, including aggravated rape and charges of oral, vaginal, and anal penetration; Vandenburg's charges include aggravated rape and "criminal responsibility" for Batey's assaults, the Tennessean reports. Video and images taken on the attackers' cellphones show Batey assaulting the drunk, unconscious student while Vandenburg laughingly roots them on, reports the Tennessean. The victim testified that afterward she protected Vandenburg, whom she dated, but in court that protection was gone: "That's me," she said as the video footage rolled. Trials are still pending for two other men accused of taking part in the rape. Sentencing for Batey and Vandenburg is due March 6. (More Vanderbilt University stories.)

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