Tulane, woman alleging on-campus rape ask judge to seal lawsuit _lowres

Niquel Q. Veal

A defense attorney for Tulane University wide receiver Niguel “Teddy” Veal hit back Wednesday against claims that Veal raped a drunken high-school student in his dorm room last week.

Attorney Donald “Chick” Foret said he hopes prosecutors will refuse the felony case.

“We have every confidence that they will get to exactly what happened, the truth of the matter,” Foret said after a brief appearance in Orleans Parish Magistrate Court.

“I’m not going to really talk about the facts, but I’ll tell you this: There was not a rape that happened that night,” Foret added. “This young man was an honors student at West Jefferson High School. He lived in an honors dorm at Tulane. He’s majoring in engineering. He’s a fine young man.”

Veal, a 17-year-old freshman, was suspended from the Green Wave football team Tuesday after New Orleans police booked him on one count of simple rape.

An 18-year-old high school student told authorities that Veal raped her at about 4 a.m. April 14 inside his Butler Hall dorm room. According to police, the woman had been drinking and went to Veal’s dorm room to watch a movie. While there, she had consensual sex with his roommate. An arrest warrant says an unnamed “female athlete chaperone” had also gone to the dorm with the victim.

Police alleged in court documents that the girl “passed out inebriated from alcohol consumption, only to awaken with (Veal) on top of her engaging in sexual intercourse against her will.” The woman had been in Veal’s roommate’s bed, police said, and Veal allegedly raped her after his roommate left the room.

Foret said Veal has given a statement to detectives and has “nothing to hide.”

“His statement will always be the same,” he added, “ and we’re looking forward to working with the DA’s Office to try to get this case refused and move on with his life.”

Veal starred at wide receiver at West Jefferson High School, where he was a three-year letterman, and had been rated a three-star recruit by ESPN. He also lettered in basketball, baseball, and track and field and was a member of the A/B honor roll, according to a Tulane online biography.

He finished high school a semester early and enrolled at Tulane this semester.

Veal was released Tuesday from Orleans Parish Prison after posting $20,000 bail. He appeared in court briefly Wednesday to sign an order requiring he stay away from the alleged victim.

“Sir, I don’t ever want to see you back in (this) court again,” Magistrate Judge Harry Cantrell admonished Veal.

Cantrell handles preliminary court proceedings of criminal defendants, and Veal’s case would be assigned to another Criminal District Court judge should prosecutors proceed with the rape case.

“You will not, Your Honor,” Foret told Cantrell.