Report: D.A. to argue Bryant misled police

From Wire Reports

The prosecution in the Kobe Bryant sexual assault case will present evidence that sex between him and his accuser wasn't consensual and assert that the Los Angeles Lakers star misled Colorado law enforcement, reported.

Sources familiar with the prosecution's case have told ESPN and ABC News that Mark Hurlbert, the district attorney for Eagle County, Colo., will focus on alleged injuries suffered by Bryant's accuser, a 19-year-old woman, to prove that she was assaulted.

The woman suffered physical trauma in the vaginal area, the Rocky Mountain News reported today, citing law enforcement sources close to the investigation. Krista Flannigan, a spokeswoman for the Eagle County prosecutor, declined to comment to the newspaper.

The ABC and ESPN sources also say that Bryant met his accuser June 30, when she gave him a tour of the Lodge & Spa at the Cordillera, during which he invited the woman, who worked as a receptionist and concierge, to come to his room later that evening.

The woman went to Bryant's room that night and spent less than half-hour there, according to the sources. ABC News sources say that the two engaged in some consensual sexual activity in Bryant's room, but that the intercourse that took place was not consensual.

When he filed charges July 18, Hurlbert said he had both physical and testimonial evidence to prove the case. He said Bryant forced the victim into "submission" through physical force but declined to disclose other details.

According to ESPN's sources, prosecutors also believe that Bryant intentionally deceived police officers and that his statements to them were inconsistent.

Bryant was interviewed by investigators the night of July 1 and voluntarily provided DNA samples at a hospital the next morning. He turned himself in to police on July 4.

Bryant is free on bond pending a court hearing Wednesday, when he will be arraigned.

Additionally, Eagle County Judge Frederick Gannett will hear arguments today on whether the sealed court records about the sexual assault allegation against Bryant should be made public.

Hurlbert asked the judge yesterday to postpone the hearing, saying a 230-page filing from media attorneys he received late Tuesday was "untimely, disorganized and overly lengthy." The judge denied the request.

Attorneys for media organizations - including the Los Angeles Times, Denver Post and NBC - have argued that many details have been publicized already. The Times is a Tribune Publishing newspaper.

Hurlbert and defense lawyers want to keep the records sealed, arguing that publicity could affect Bryant's right to a fair trial.

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