Team, prosecutors send conflicting messages on Trevor Mbakwe
December 10, 2009 — 4:22pm
Andy Katz (ESPN.com) caught up with Tubby Smith at the 76 Classic in Anaheim, Calif., a few weeks ago. Smith told Katz that Trevor Mbakwe, sidelined indefinitely due to legal issues, might play soon because a felony battery charge against him could be dropped in the near future.
"Smith said Mbakwe could be back with the team any day because they anticipate his case could be dropped," Katz wrote in a Nov. 25 article.
But a source with the Miami district attorney's office said Thursday prosecutors will proceed with charges against Mbakwe and expect to establish a new trial date early next year.
"Absolutely NO TRUTH to the rumor(s) you are hearing," the source said. "[Prosecutors in the case] are proceeding with [the] deposition schedule of the defense witnesses in preparation for trial."
I reported last month that Mbakwe's lawyer, Gregory Samms, had trouble locating the alleged victim, who accused Mbakwe of assaulting her in April in Miami.
Smith's words and the defense attorney's challenges tracking down the accuser suggested that the Gophers might get Mbakwe back soon, assuming the charges are dropped.
Marcus Fuller joined the Star Tribune in 2016 after 11 years covering Gophers sports – and just about every other team and league in town -- for the St. Paul Pioneer Press. Before making the Twin Cities his home, Marcus spent two years in The Kansas City Star sports department. Marcus grew up in Hawaii and is a 2002 graduate of San Jose State. Follow Fuller on Twitter @Marcus_R_Fuller.
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