Student In Vandy Rape Case Speaks To Other Student Athletes

Posted at 6:15 PM, Apr 03, 2017
and last updated 2017-04-03 19:57:15-04

One of the suspects in the Vanderbilt rape case has given speeches at several universities about making bad choices as a student athlete, but some are concerned that his participation has revictimized the victim in his own ongoing rape case.

Accused rapist, Brandon Banks is set to stand trial in just two months.

Hey has raised eyebrows with his speaking events at college campuses talking about the dangers of making bad choices, but some think he's made a bad choice by visiting college campuses as part of a seminar on sexual assault.

His lawyer said Banks has visited several universities during the past year including Alabama and Georgia. The lawyer said Banks is not paid and does not speak about specifics of his case.

The goal of his talks are to help student athletes, but critics have said this accused rapist should have no part in the discussion.

Banks and co-defendant Tip Mckenzie were charged with raping an unconscious female in a Vanderbilt dormitory four years ago.

Since then, two others, Brandon Vandenburg and Corey Batey, were convicted. Banks is up next. So why is he sharing his story on college campuses before trial?

"He's maybe trying to change the way people look at these issues on college campuses this could help him in negotiations with district attorneys office potentially," said Newschannel5 legal analyst Nick Leonardo.

Yet, Leonardo also said doing so could backfire.

"It could have the opposite effect. The D.A. could say yes it is revictimizing the victim in this case," said Leonardo.

It's hard to know how Bank's participation in the seminars might impact the trial. Parties on both sides declined to comment on camera.

There is a question of whether there will even be a trial. Leonardo said plea discussions are likely active for both Banks and McKenzie.

They know Vandenburg and Batey were found guilty and are serving 15-plus years. If offered a deal of eight years or less, as we've heard from sources, the odds are that they would take it rather than face a jury.

Banks' attorney said they hope to reach some type of agreement to avoid a trial in June. No date has been set yet for McKenzie.