Two days after turning in a stellar performance during the MLB All Star game, Giants third baseman Pablo Sandoval has another reason to celebrate. The Santa Cruz County Sheriff's Office has cleared the player of an alleged rape that took place at Seascape Resort in Aptos on June 1. "At the end of our investigation, where we've done numerous interviews, we've collected physical and biological evidence, which some of it was submitted to Department of Justice, we've concluded that there's insufficient information and evidence for an arrest," Deputy District Attorney April Skalland told ABC7 News.
Detectives said Sandoval met his 21-year-old accuser at a Santa Cruz nightclub before a group went back to the Aptos resort. Sandoval previously issued a statement that the sex was consensual. The alleged victim said she was too intoxicated to say yes.
Law enforcement says the high-profile allegations have been handled like any other sexual assault case, but there are those who say public scrutiny has re-victimized Sandoval's accuser. "What we're seeing on the blogs and what we're seeing people's reaction to this, is that she's after money and that she has another motive, when in fact, victims of violence are exactly that. They are victims of violence," said Women's Crisis Support Executive Director Laura Segura.
Sandoval's attorney Eric Geffon released a statement Thursday saying, "The Sheriff's Department has completed a thorough and professional investigation and we are pleased that they have concluded that there is insufficient evidence to support an arrest. Pablo will continue to focus on helping the Giants towards a playoff run this season."
A 300-page report from the sheriff's office along with its recommendation is now in the hands of the district attorney. "As soon as we're done reading it, if we have any follow-up investigations or follow-up requests for the sheriff's office, we'll ask them. If we don't then, we'll make our decision," Lee said.
That final decision could come as early as next week. Both the district attorney and the sheriff's office say they have handled this sexual assault case just like they would handle any other.