Sypher denies trying to extort Pitino

Updated: July 8, 2010, 5:14 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- The woman charged with attempting to extort $10 million from Louisville basketball coach Rick Pitino has denied the charges in a court brief.

Karen Cunagin Sypher's attorney, James Earhart, filed a five-page trial brief Thursday. It details the charges against Sypher and what prosecutors must prove to convict her. It also includes a single sentence saying she denies the charges.

Opening statements are set to begin in her trial July 26. Jury selection is July 12 and 13.

Sypher has pleaded not guilty. She is accused of demanding college tuition for her children, her house to be paid off and $10 million.

Prosecutors filed a trial brief on Wednesday detailing the charges, as well as several witnesses and key pieces of evidence they plan to use at trial. They also said Sypher had made earlier, false claims of sexual harassment against an auto glass business owner in 2001.

In the earlier case, prosecutors said, Sypher had consensual sex with the man, then was hired by him. She claimed to be pregnant when he ended the relationship and sued the man after she was fired a few months later, claiming sexual harassment.

Prosecutors alleged that the accusation was false.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

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