- Ohm Youngmisuk, ESPN Staff Writer
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One day after Lawrence Taylor was arraigned on charges of third-degree rape and patronizing a prostitute, the Hall of Famer's attorney said evidence will show the linebacker did have "some contact" with the 16-year-old runaway.
Arthur Aidala, who is defending Taylor, still insists that Taylor did not rape or have intercourse with anybody at the Holiday Inn in Montebello, N.Y., where the alleged incident took place.
"I think that the investigation will bear out that he was in contact with her that night," Aidala said Friday in an appearance on the Mike Francesa show on WFAN radio. "What exactly happened, I wasn't there. I think that the evidence will show that there was some contact between the two, but it wasn't sex. Lawrence is saying they did not have sex. I believe he said that. Again I don't have the statement [Taylor made to the police]. He said he did not have sex with her."
Meanwhile, the man who authorities say set up Taylor with the runaway told the woman to tell Taylor she was 19 years old and not 16, according to a court statement taken from an FBI special agent.
The special agent filed the statement as part of the case against Rasheed Davis, who was charged with sex trafficking of a child in a federal complaint filed Friday in Manhattan federal court.
Davis was ordered held without bail by a federal magistrate after prosecutors said they suspect the defendant forced other young women into prostitution.
Davis, if free, would be an "extreme danger to the community" since authorities "haven't yet identified all the victims who are out there," said prosecutor Amanda Kramer.
On Thursday, Aidala initially referred to the alleged victim -- who was being identified by the court with the initials "C.F." -- as "a total stranger" when he argued against an order of protection from Taylor.
"I don't even know if they were in the hotel," Aidala said on Thursday outside the Ramapo (N.Y.) Police Department. "The truth is, as far as I know, I don't know if any woman ever entered any room."
On Friday, Aidala said he believes evidence will show that the alleged victim was at the Holiday Inn where Taylor was arrested by authorities on early Thursday morning.
"I am still investigating," Aidala said. "I don't know. We are also going to get the video surveillance from the hotel. Do I think that you are going to see this woman walking into the hotel lobby and a relatively short time later walking out of the hotel lobby? Yes. I think that is what the video is going to show."
Aidala maintains Taylor does not know Davis. In the complaint, authorities said the 51-year-old Taylor told police following his arrest Thursday that he had taken a car service from Newark International Airport to a hotel north of New York City to meet the alleged victim.
Police say Taylor admitted paying $300 in cash for sex with the alleged victim.
The girl, who was reported missing by her family in March, met Davis at a Bronx bus stop two to three weeks ago. The federal complaint says she told investigators that Davis, a 36-year-old parolee, offered her a place to live and a way to make money.
She said Davis gave her Ecstasy and marijuana before causing her "to engage in multiple commercial sex acts" for prices ranging from $80 to $150. He advertised her services by sending cell phone photos of her and posting ads on websites, the complaint says.
"The only thing I can tell you was that [Taylor] had no contact with Rasheed Davis or anyone who acted like a pimp," Aidala said. "Let's deflate some of the myths. He doesn't know this guy.
"I don't think we are going to see any phone records of this person coming into LT's phone, going out of LT's phone," Aidala added. "In terms of Rasheed Davis, Lawrence is adamant that he has no clue who this person is."
According to the complaint, Davis sent the girl a text message on Wednesday in which he said he wanted her to have sex with "Client-1" for $300. When she refused, Davis began threatening her with text messages, prosecutors said.
The texts were "along the lines of 'I'm going to 'F' you up,'" Kramer said.
The complaint said Davis later beat up the victim, drove her to the hotel against her will and waited outside for an hour while she had sex with Taylor.
"I believe even by the investigation done by the district attorney's office and the police department, nobody is saying that Lawrence Taylor saw a bloodied-up young woman," Aidala said. "If he saw a young, underaged woman bloodied up, he wouldn't want anything to do with her except get her help. If you see some woman thrown into your room and she is in distress -- he did not see any woman in distress, bloodied injured in any way shape or form."
Aidala reiterated that his client did not have intercourse with anyone at the hotel that night.
"I don't think their statement is, 'Yes he had sex with her,'" Aidala said of what authorities are claiming. "I think their statement is, 'Yes, he had sexual relations with her.' [But] I don't have a copy of the statement."
Authorities found notebooks in the home where Davis kept "customers' information," Kramer said.
Defense attorney Sabrina Shroff had argued her client should get bail, saying Davis lived in another home with his mother and was a lifelong New Yorker. Afterward, she declined to comment on the charges.
Meanwhile, Aidala believes Taylor's celebrity status has a lot to do with his client's current predicament. Taylor was freed on $75,000 bond.
Taylor's agent, Mark Lepselter, said the former Giants star will likely spend his time before his next court date in June playing golf and preparing for his case in South Florida, where he lives.
"I will say to you that you just have to let the dust settle," Lepselter said on the McDonald and Tierney show on 1050 ESPN radio. "It is an unfortunate set of circumstances no matter how you cut it.
"He has worked so hard over the last 12 years to earn back the respect of the public. And the Giants fans in particular, I know how strongly he feels about them. He was at the stadium more this past season than he had been in recent years. He has this Elvis-like persona there at the stadium. They have always treated him like their own and I know he is hoping they will continue to do so."
Ohm Youngmisuk covers the New York Giants for ESPNNewYork.com. Follow him on Twitter. Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.
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