ORCHARD PARK, NY – The Buffalo Tickets released the bettor –Matt Araiza two days after filing a civil lawsuit alleging that he and two other former and current San Diego State football players raped a minor.
Araiza was not in training on Saturday after being ruled out of Friday’s pre-season game against the Carolina Panthers and was not on the sidelines during the game or in the dressing room after the game was over. He returned to Buffalo, NY on the team plane.
In a postgame news conference on Friday, coach Sean McDermott declined to comment on Araiza’s status or exactly what the team knew before the lawsuit was filed. McDermott said there was “some” new information learned within 24 hours of the complaint being filed, but did not comment on whether he felt Araiza lied to him or the team.
“It’s just a matter of trying to find the truth at the end of the day, isn’t it,” McDermott said. “That’s the goal is to find the truth and do the right thing. And that’s what I keep coming back to in my mind and my heart is to find the truth to the best of my ability and do the right thing. thing.”
In a statement on Thursday, the team said it had “conducted a thorough review of this matter.”
The lawsuit alleges that Araiza, who was 21 at the time, had sex with a then 17-year-old high school student, who was under the age of consent in California, outside of a off-campus party held at her residence in the early morning of October 17, 2021. Later, according to the lawsuit, Araiza then brought her inside the house, where at least three other men, including the other two defendants Named in the lawsuit, Zavier Leonard, a redshirt freshman with the Aztecs, and Nowlin Ewaliko, who is no longer on the team’s roster, have been located. She was then repeatedly raped for about an hour and a half.
Araiza’s criminal attorney, Kerry Armstrong, told ESPN that his client spoke with the girl at the party, but the rape allegations were “just plain untrue”.
Armstrong also said he understands Araiza only informed the Bills of the issue after an LA Times article, published on June 3, reported that rape allegations against five Aztec footballers did not had not been investigated by the State of San Diego.
McDermott declined to comment on when the Bills learned of the allegations.
A criminal investigation is ongoing into the alleged events as well as an investigation by the State of San Diego under California State University’s system-wide policy.
The NFL said in a statement it was aware of the incident but declined to comment. Because the alleged rape occurred before Araiza was drafted, he would not be subject to the league’s personal conduct policy.
The Bills released the punter matt hackthe team’s 2021 punter, named Araiza the team’s punter for the 2022 season on Monday. He was the only bettor on the team’s roster along with quarterback Matt Barley punting four times for the Bills against the Panthers.
Araiza was drafted by the Bills in the sixth round of the 2022 NFL Draft.