Ex-teammate testifies on 2nd day of rape trial for former UT players

Local News

A former Vol was called to testify Tuesday in the rape trial of two of his former teammates.

A.J. Johnson and Michael Williams are accused of aggravated rape over what happened at a November 2014 party off campus.

The state and the defense made opening statements Monday, painting two very different pictures of the events that occurred in November of 2014.

The defense says the accuser and two defendants were all willing participants in a sexual act, but the state says that’s far from what actually happened.

The trial got off to a slow start with jury selection alone taking up a week, but now the pace is picking up. Four state witnesses have been called to the stand, one of whom is a former football player who played on the same team as the two defendants.

“She approached me and was hyperventilating. She was like, ‘Drae please help me,'” said Drae Bowles.

The wide receiver recounted the moment he saw a female UT athlete shortly after she says she was raped by Johnson and Williams nearly four years ago.

Related story: Amended UT sexual assault lawsuit alleges Jones called player ‘traitor’ after helping rape victim

He recalled seeing her shaken and emotional.

“I asked her if she was okay and she told me she had been raped. And I was like what? You’d been raped? She said she had been raped by Mike and AJ. She didn’t know what to do so she asked me what should she do?” Bowles said on the stand.

Bowles said he told her his father was a police officer. They called him on on speaker phone and his dad advised the woman to file a police report.

Bowles made sure she was okay and even drove her home, but his help didn’t go unnoticed. Bowles testified in court that many of his teammates on the football team shunned him for what they viewed as betrayal. Some even expressed their frustration through physical attacks.

“Curt Maggitt approached me and said that he wanted to talk to me, so we went in the locker room and we talked. He was very upset about what I did to hurt A.J.’s career. He hit me and I hit him back,” said Bowles.

There are around 20 state witnesses on the witness list, including the accuser herself. Court resumes Tuesday morning at 10 a.m.

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