Prosecutors plan to dismiss a misdemeanor assault charge against VCU basketball star Mo Alie-Cox after seeing video footage that disproved a woman's claim that he punched her in the face, Richmond's top prosecutor said Thursday.
Alie-Cox's accuser, Morgan Ashley Kaye, claimed that she had been in a dispute with a woman in a Richmond nightclub in April and had "accidentally" grabbed the other woman's hair after that woman shoved her, according to court papers.
Kaye added in her criminal complaint that during the dispute with the other woman, "Mo Alie-Cox punched me in the face."
But Richmond Commonwealth's Attorney Michael N. Herring said Thursday that "the footage did not show Mo Alie-Cox striking this woman at all."
"It will be dismissed," Herring added. "His lawyer has been notified. ... And there will likely be an agreement to expunge it from his record."
Alie-Cox's defense attorney has declined to discuss the details of the case.
“We are pleased that Mo can now put this allegation behind him," VCU head coach Will Wade said in a statement released by the school Thursday evening. "After speaking with Mo and gathering all of the facts on this situation, we believed and hoped that his name would be cleared. From the time we began recruiting Mo four years ago, he has always carried himself the right way with terrific grace and humility. We are proud to have Mo as a member of the VCU family and basketball team. We look forward to continuing to build on his outstanding career as a Ram these next two seasons.”
Herring said the video shows that Kaye was involved in "some degree of mutual combat, but it was not with Mo Alie-Cox."
The incident occurred April 3 at the Society Social Club in Shockoe Bottom. Kaye filed her criminal complaint against Alie-Cox nearly three weeks later, on April 22.
In a Tweet earlier this month that has since been deleted, Kaye wrote that she “wanted VCU to handle it in-house without making a big issue of this.” She has not responded to interview requests.
“We have been informed by the Richmond Commonwealth Attorney’s Office they have determined that Mo had no involvement in the alleged assault and that the charges against him will be withdrawn," said VCU athletic director Ed McLaughlin. "These actions confirm our knowledge and experience of Mo as an upstanding young man of the highest character who has represented our men’s basketball program and our university with exemplary leadership academically, socially and athletically. We look forward to watching him continue to represent VCU for the next two years as a member of our program.”
In her criminal complaint, Kaye wrote that a physical confrontation unfolded after a woman "told me not to look in the direction."
"I said I could look wherever I please," Kaye wrote in the complaint.
More words were exchanged, leading to a physical confrontation, Kaye wrote.
Alie-Cox, a rising-junior, is a 6-foot6, 255-pound forward for the Rams. Alie-Cox was a powerful inside presence on both ends of the court for VCU last season and averaged 7.4 points, 5.7 rebounds and 1.9 blocked shots as a redshirt sophomore. Blocked shots by Alie-Cox fueled chants by the home crowd: "Mo says no."
A trial date in the case has been set for June 15. Herring said prosecutors will dismiss the case on that date or sooner.