Day-by-day summary of trial for Brandon Banks - WSMV News 4

Day-by-day summary of trial for Brandon Banks

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The trial for former Vanderbilt football player Brandon Banks began on June 19, 2017.

Banks is accused of joining his teammates Brandon Vandenburg, Cory Batey and Jaborian McKenzie as they raped an unconscious student inside Vandenburg’s dorm room in 2013.

Banks has pleaded not guilty to five counts of aggravated rape and two counts of aggravated sexual battery.

Vandenburg and Batey have already been convicted and sentenced to prison in connection with the case.

Banks' former roommate, Jaborian McKenzie, has not yet been tried.


The state and the defense delivered their opening statements.

Assistant District Attorney Jan Norman gave the jury a timeline of events in the case, describing the graphic details of the moments that were caught on camera by the defendants.

Attorney Katie Hagan delivered the opening statement for the defense, pointing out to the jury that the videos will be "unsettling" to watch and that "awful, terrible" things were being done to the victim.

The defense is not denying that Brandon Banks was involved in the incident but claim he was pressured and bullied into going along with it.

Capt. Donnie Harville, who was a detective with the Vanderbilt University Police Department in 2013, was called to the stand. He gave the jury a play-by-play of of the surveillance video that shows the moments before and after the sexual assault.

Detective Jason Mayo was also called to the stand. Mayo is the detective who had to tell the victim that the sexual assault occurred and encouraged her to undergo a rape kit.

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During the second day of the trial, jurors saw disturbing videos of the sexual assault that were filmed inside the dorm room.

Detective Chad Gish, who specializes in digital forensics for the Metro Nashville Police Department, told the jury how he found deleted images and videos on Brandon Vandenburg’s phone that were taken during the rape.

Gish explained every detail of what was being done to the victim as she was lying unconscious on the floor of Vandenburg’s dorm room in Gillette Hall.

After all of that graphic testimony, Jaborian “Tip” McKenzie took the stand. McKenzie, who is out on bond, was roommates with Brandon Banks and considered them to be “best friends” back in 2013.

Mack Prioleau, Vandenburg's former roommate, also testified on Tuesday. He was in the room during the sexual assault and was lying in his bed in the top bunk when Vandenburg and three other men came in the room with the woman. When asked why he didn't step in to help the victim, Prioleau said he didn't know what to do.

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Ex-Vanderbilt football player Brandon Banks took the stand on Wednesday to tell his side of the story about the sexual assault of a female student back in 2013.

A heated exchange between Banks and the prosecution ended with him breaking down in tears.

Banks and his defense team painted a picture of a situation where he was intimidated, bullied and tormented to participate in the assault.

"He [Brandon Vandenburg] said he was going to f*** me up in the room," Banks said.

Before Banks took the stand, the state called four witnesses, including the victim.

The woman, who is now in graduate school working toward a Ph.D., shared chilling testimony about the brutal rape that changed her life. This is the fourth time she has had to take the stand in this case.

The woman said it all started when she met up with Vandenburg at the Tin Roof on Demonbreun. She told jurors that she does not remember anything past getting a drink from Vandenburg that night, which he described as "a California version of a Long Island iced tea."

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The jury was handed the case in the Brandon Banks trial around 2:35 p.m.

Around 8 p.m., after almost six hours of deliberations, they decided to dismiss for the night. The jury will return at 9 a.m. Friday.

This came after the state and defense spent about two hours presenting their closing arguments.

Assistant District Attorney Jan Norman replayed portions of the graphic videos and pictures of the assault for the jury to prove Banks is guilty.

Norman also reminded jurors about the definition of duress, which is important because this plays into Banks' legal argument for his defense.

Defense attorney Mark Scruggs claims that Banks could not leave the room because of many factors, citing bullying from his teammates and the pressure to remain loyal to the Vanderbilt football team.

The defense team called two witnesses, both former football players, to the stand on Thursday morning. There was some debate about what those witnesses could say in front of the jury after the state argued that testimony about what happened during previous football practices was not relevant.

The state called two rebuttal witnesses. One of them was Detective Chad Gish, who testified that he did not find any threatening or intimidating messages sent to Banks during his search of all four co-defendants' cellphones.

The victim was in the courtroom on Thursday morning. She appeared a little emotional but kept her composure.

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Jurors returned at 9 a.m. Friday and went right back to work.

After about nine hours of deliberation – about 15 hours in total – jurors found Brandon Banks guilty on one count of aggravated rape and aggravated sexual battery.

Banks was found not guilty on five of the seven charges.

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