Former NFL player Kellen Winslow II sat emotionless Monday as his trial on charges that he raped three women began in a Vista, California, court, the San Diego Union-Tribune reported.
Opening statements from prosecutors and defense addressed Winslow’s life as a professional athlete. State attorneys portrayed the former NFL and University of Miami football player as someone who made tens of millions of dollars but “took what he wanted,” in reference to prosecutors’ allegations that he raped the women.
— Cathy Russon (@cathyrusson) May 20, 2019
Winslow’s defense attorneys’ opening argument portrayed the sex with the women as consensual and, according to The Associated Press, asked jurors not to judge the married father for his “cheating ways.”
Winslow, 35, is charged with raping a hitchhiker and a homeless woman in Encinitas, California, in 2018 and a 17-year-old female in San Diego County in 2003 when he was in college, as well as exposing himself to a fourth woman and committing a lewd act in front of a fifth.
The incident involving the fifth woman happened in February while Winslow was free on a $2 million bond and awaiting trial, authorities say. He has been held in jail without bond since.
Winslow’s father, Hall of Famer and former San Diego Chargers star Kellen Winslow, sat behind his son in the courtroom.
Kellen Winslow II has pleaded not guilty to 12 counts and, if convicted, could face life in prison.
The prosecution is expected to start calling witnesses to the stand Tuesday.
Taken by the Browns with the No. 6 overall pick in the 2004 NFL Draft, Winslow suffered a broken right leg his rookie season then sustained a serious knee injury to the same leg in a motorcycle accident that offseason.
He played for the Browns, Buccaneers, Patriots and Jets in an NFL career that ended when he was suspended in 2013 while with the Jets for violating the league’s policy on performance enhancers.