Brian Banks, a former USC Trojans recruit, has been exonerated of a rape conviction that put him in prison for five years.

Banks, who is now 26, pleaded no contest 10 years ago on the advice of his lawyer after a childhood friend falsely accused him of rape.

That former childhood friend, Wanetta Gibson, contacted him when he got out of prison via Facebook.

According to the report by ESPNLosAngeles.com:

In an initial meeting with him, she said she had lied; there had been no kidnap and no rape and she offered to help him clear his record, court records state

But she refused to repeat the story to prosecutors because she feared she would have to return a $1.5 million payment from a civil suit brought by her mother against Long Beach schools

During a second meeting that was secretly videotaped, she told Banks, "'I will go through with helping you but it's like at the same time all that money they gave us, I mean gave me, I don't want to have to pay it back," according to a defense investigator who was at the meeting.

On Thursday, May 24th, Banks as aforementioned, was exonerated of all charges. Banks said outside court on that day, that he had lost all hope of proving his innocence until Gibson contacted him.

Now, Banks, the former star middle linebacker at Long Beach Polytechnic High School who verbally committed to USC, wants a shot shot at the NFL.

Following the court case, Banks' agent Justin Brooks, appealed to NFL teams to give Banks a chance. He said Banks has been training six days a week to get in shape for the career he wants.

"He has the speed and the strength. He certainly has the heart," Brooks said. "I hope he gets the attention of people in the sports world."

The NFL future of Banks is uncertain, however Banks, who could not get work because he was a registered sex offender and had a felony record due the Gibson's defamation, can try to move forward.

Gibson destroyed Banks' future, and he can never get that time back due to Gibson's ignorance. 

The fate of Gibson at this time time is still unknown, but justice needs to served. 

Rape is a serious charge and should never be falsified.

Reginald McIntyre Jr. is a contributing writer for FootBasket. He also contributes at Hoops Authority. Follow him on Twitter @McIntyre_II.


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