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USC linebacker Osa Masina charged with rape in Utah case

USC linebacker Osa Masina
USC linebacker Osa Masina looks on from the sideline during a training camp practice in the L.A. Memorial Coliseum on Aug. 8.
(Shotgun Spratling / Los Angeles Times)

Suspended USC linebacker Osa Masina was charged with rape and two counts of forcible sodomy by authorities in Utah on Thursday, according to charging papers obtained by the Times. The charges stem from an alleged incident involving a young woman that took place on July 26 in Utah.

Masina surrendered to police at 10:30 a.m. local time and was booked into Salt Lake County jail, his attorney, Greg Skordas, said. Later Thursday, Skordas said Masina posted bail set at $250,000 and was released.

The Los Angeles Police Department is also investigating an allegation that Masina sexually assaulted the same woman in Los Angeles, according to an LAPD search warrant obtained by The Times. He has not been charged with a crime relating to that investigation.

Masina has been suspended from games, but he practiced with USC and attended classes and team meetings until last Friday. That day, he was notified that he had been put on “interim suspension pending administrative review of a Title IX investigation,” according to Skordas.

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That means Masina is barred from all USC-sponsored activities and he is unable to appear on campus without permission and an escort. He also was forced to vacate his campus residence by Monday.

According to the charging papers, the woman attended a house party with Masina and others, where they drank alcohol and consumed cookies laced with marijuana.

The woman told police that she fell asleep in the home’s basement and awoke to Masina raping her. The woman then passed out and came to as Masina performed another sex act on her before she again lost consciousness, she told police.

The woman “stated that she felt like she was not able to say no or fight him off due to her intoxicated state,” according to a police report attached to the LAPD search warrant.

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The woman told police that injuries from the alleged assault included her losing a dental crown.

Each of the three charges carry a sentence of five years to life in prison.

The alleged incident in Utah occurred 12 days after the woman said Masina and another USC player sexually assaulted her in Los Angeles.

There, she told police, Masina gave her two Xanax pills, and after drinking alcohol and smoking marijuana, she realized she was naked and Masina and another USC player, Don Hill, were performing sex acts on her.

“She knew for a fact she could not have given consent because she couldn’t move, speak or even recall much of the night’s details,” an affidavit attached to the search warrant said.

The search warrant said that Masina sent a video of him having sex with the woman to her former boyfriend via Snapchat. The former boyfriend, a member of Arizona’s football team, told police that “it did not appear she realized she was being recorded” and he “did not recall seeing any of the victim’s limbs moving,” according to the affidavit.

Skordas wrote in an email to The Times that police are “looking for things on his seized cell phone … which we think don’t exist.” The attorney didn’t elaborate.

Hill could not be reached for comment.

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According to the LAPD search warrant, police in Utah notified USC’s Department of Public Safety of the allegations on Aug. 2.

Coach Clay Helton announced on Aug. 29 that Masina had been suspended for the season-opening game. Hill traveled with the team for that game but was sent home after details of the allegation were made public. Helton said the school, not the football program, has handled the disciplinary actions for the two players.

A spokesman for the USC athletic department declined to comment.

The charging papers filed against Masina on Thursday concluded with the statement: “The evidence suggests that the Utah incident was neither a one-time event nor a spontaneous occurrence, and therefore raises concerns about the safety of others with whom the defendant may have contact.”

zach.helfand@latimes.com

Twitter: @zhelfand

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UPDATES:

9:35 p.m.: This article was updated with information about Masina posting bail.

This article was originally published at 10:00 a.m.


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