COOK COUNTY CRIMINAL COURTHOUSE — A college basketball star from Chicago who was jailed in Oklahoma after being accused of sexual assault and then again in Chicago for failing to register as a sex offender has been cleared in both cases, according to sources and court records.
Darrell Williams, now 23, was convicted in Oklahoma in 2012 of sexual assault on allegations that he groped two women at a college party, according to court records.
The case drew national attention, and resulted in protests in Stillwater, Oklahoma, including protests led by the Rev. Jesse Jackson.
Williams insisted police charged the wrong man in the case, but he was ultimately convicted. A judge suspended his sentence, and Williams returned to Chicago.
He found himself back in a jail cell in February after cops allegedly caught him urinating in an alley near his Washington Heights home on the South Side. Authorities discovered Williams' Oklahoma conviction and charged him with failing to properly register as a sex offender.
A Cook County judge ordered Williams held on $250,000 bond in spite of assertions by his attorney that the sexual assault case that labeled him a sex offender remained the subject of much scrutiny.
But the Cook County State's Attorney's Office dropped the case late last month following a decision by an Oklahoma appeals court to overturn his sexual assault conviction, authorities said.
The appeals court decision, the Associated Press reported, found that some jurors broke court rules by visiting the scene of the crime.
The Oklahoma court's decision nullified William's status as a sex offender, according to Cook County prosecutors, so prosecutors dropped their case against him for failing to register.
Williams left Chicago for Oklahoma State in 2010 to escape street violence and avoid the fate of his brother, who was shot in the back of the head a year earlier, according to report in the Sun-Times.
He had been at Oklahoma State, playing forward for the Cowboys, for little more than a year when he was arrested and charged with sexually assaulting two women at a college party in December 2010.
Williams could not be reached for comment.
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