Prosecutor: No evidence to charge former Florida center Caleb Brantley in bar scuffle

Caleb Brantley

There's not enough evidence to charge former Florida Gator center Caleb Brantley in connection with a confrontation outside of a Gainesville bar last month, a prosecutor said Wednesday.

Darry Lloyd, deputy chief investigator with the State Attorney's Office, said in a statement that he reviewed a sworn complaint filed by the Gainesville Police Department and found "no reliable evidence" to prosecute.

Police responded to a parking lot outside Fat Daddy's Bar on April 13th after officers saw a skirmish involving a group of people.

The initial police report said the woman, Chelsea Austin, admitted to hitting Brantley first and that Brantley admitted to pushing her out of his space. Brantley was listed as a victim in the report but no charges were filed.

Days later, Gainesville Police swore out a complaint after they say a witness came forward and said Brantley had knocked the woman unconscious.

Lloyd wrote Wednesday that they are dismissing the complaint.

"First, the alleged victim, who had been drinking heavily despite being underage and was initially un-cooperative and denied having even been assaulted, has little to no memory of anything involved in the incident and cannot provide any credible testimony upon which a prosecution could go forward," Lloyd wrote.

Lloyd said witnesses for Austin had also been drinking and provided testimony that contradicted one another and "an apparently neutral witness who supports Brantley's version of events."

Lloyd said reports of a significant injury are also inaccurate.

"In essence, the facts suggest that the alleged victim's friends engaged Brantley in an unpleasant verbal exchange, during which the alleged victim began to physically punch or assault Brantley, causing him to shove her away," Lloyd wrote.

The case became national news because it happened just weeks before the NFL Draft, in which Brantley was projected to go as high as late in the first round.

He was selected with the 185th pick by the Cleveland Browns.

Brantley released a statement Wednesday saying he was grateful for the prosecutor's ruling and the opportunity to play for the Browns.

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