Nov 14, 2013 7:33 PM by Matthew Schwartz
Tucson--The assault charge against former UA assistant strength and conditioning coach Frank Davis was considered for more than five months. The case was closed today in about five minutes.
The Pima County Attorney dropped the charge against Davis, so he avoids a possible criminal conviction. In exchange, Davis agreed to drop a defamation suit he filed against the alleged victim, former football team student assistant Brandon Santa-Cruz.
Deputy County Attorney Heather Clauss told the News 4 Tucson Investigators, "We reviewed the agreement, and with the victim's input, we decided that this was a fair and just outcome."
Davis was smiling when the case was dismissed, but he and his attorney declined comment. In September, when it appeared an agreement would be reached, Davis told us, "I just can't wait for it to be over with. So hopefully with all this being worked out, we can move forward and just live our lives just go from there."
Davis was an assistant strength and conditioning coach with UA, working with the football team. A former offensive lineman a the University of South Florida, Davis played in the National Football League briefly a couple of years ago. Santa-Cruz comes from a family of UA grads, and was working as a student assistant with the team when the incident happened.
After the team's brutal home loss last year to rival ASU, Davis and Santa-Cruz had an argument. Santa-Cruz, who is 5'9"" and about 200 lbs., said Davis, who is 6'4" and 300 lbs., grabbed him by the shirt collar and body-slammed him. Santa-Cruz said he suffered a bruised sternum and a neck injury. Davis maintained that Santa-Cruz was the instigator.
Davis' contract with the University expired June 30 and was not renewed.
The News 4 Tucson Investigators obtained a joint statement that was written by the attorneys and signed by both men. It says in part, "Davis acknowledges that Santa-Cruz has never intenionally misrepresented anything about the events. Santa-Cruz acknowledges that Davis did not intentionally or unintentionally assault him."
Santa-Cruz' statement is far different than what he told the News 4 Tucson Investigators in May, shortly after he filed the assault charge. He claimed then that Davis had often bullied him during the season and started the altercation last November.
Santa-Cruz was not in the courtroom today, but on the phone he told the News 4 Investigators that he's satisfied with the deal. The 21-year old senior is majoring in business management. After the altercation, he was moved from the football program to a job in event management.
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