Brian Banks, a high school American football star who was wrongly accused and convicted of kidnap and rape is seeking compensation for his ordeal.
He is demanding $100 per day of incarceration, which according to Mr Banks’ legal team, he is entitled to under Californian state law.
His exoneration came about when his accuser, Wanetta Gibson, admitted she fabricated the story of kidnap and rape. She stated she had not come forward earlier as she had received a large payout over the incident from the school district, and she thought it would affect her relationship with her children.
After serving six years in prison, Mr Banks was released in February last year. Soon after, he received a friend request from Gibson on Facebook. She stated she wanted “bygones to be bygones”.
According to Mr Banks’ lawyer, they met a short while later and the meeting was video recorded.
She told Mr Banks: “I will go through with helping you but it’s like at the same time all that money they gave us, I mean gave me, I don’t want to have to pay it back.”
Gibson accused Mr Banks of kidnap and rape in 2002, when after a chance meeting they went to a stairwell to make out. During the encounter, Gibson became upset at a remark made by Mr Banks, and subsequently she concocted the kidnap and rape story.
Mr Banks was being recruited by several colleges prior to the charges, one of which had offered him a scholarship.
Somewhat strangely, his lawyer at the original trial told Mr Banks that should he not plead ‘no contest’ to the charges as he could receive a forty one year prison sentence if he was found guilty.
He was expected to serve eighteen months but instead he received a six year prison sentence. Upon release he was registered as a sex offender, and kept under electronic monitoring.
Mr Banks said: “My only dream in the world is just to be free… For years, I felt like a toy with the switch cut off, sitting on the shelf.”
Mr Banks has said he will not pursue Gibson for compensation.