College Athlete Intervenes in Alleged Sexual Assault

A college athlete at the University of Florida is being celebrated for intervening in the alleged sexual assault of a 19-year-old woman behind a bar in Gainesville, Florida, early Thursday morning.

Florida Gators

Christian Garcia, a junior linebacker at UF, works as a security guard at the bar. On his way home, he observed a man attempting to have sex with a woman who appeared unconscious near a dumpster, The Washington Post reports. That's when he chose to take action.

"I mean, at that point, I’m like, this isn’t right," Garcia told CBS Miami. "This girl is probably drunk — there’s no possible way she could’ve given consent."

Garcia told the man — identified by police as 34-year-old Christopher Shaw — to get off of the woman. At that point Shaw became aggressive. Shaw told Garcia to mind his own business and attempted to hit the student but he was intoxicated and ended up slipping, hitting his face on the wall, Garcia told The Gainesville Sun.

Police charged Shaw with sexual battery and held him in jail on a $500,000 bond.

Christopher Shaw

"I hold strong moral values and I don't think anyone should be taken advantage of in that kind of way," Garcia said.

According to a police report on the alleged assault, the victim struggled to speak, walk, or keep her eyes open. The scene was captured on video, which clearly shows that "the victim was mentally and physically unable to give consent due to her level of intoxication," the report states. Detectives at the Gainesville Police Department say they have "reason to believe" Shaw may have been involved in other sexual assault cases.

Garcia emphasized the importance of sticking together with friends when young people go out. "I mean, this girl, her friends had completely left her at the bar alone when she was blackout drunk," Garcia said.

[h/t The Washington Post]

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