The jury found Barber not guilty of second-degree assault, and even though the jury had the option of convicting him of fourth-degree misdemeanor assault, it unanimously rejected that as well.
Former Washington State football player Robert Barber was found not guilty of second-degree felony assault in a trial at the Whitman County Courthouse on Tuesday.
“Robert and I are just so relieved, but really exhausted, too,” Barber’s attorney, Stephen Graham, said in a text message to The Seattle Times after the verdict was delivered. “We look forward to spending some low-key time with our families.”
A jury of seven men and six women ruled in Barber’s favor after a two-day trial in which they heard testimony from Barber, the alleged victim and several key witnesses. The jury found Barber not guilty of second-degree assault, and even though the jury had the option of convicting him of fourth-degree misdemeanor assault, it unanimously rejected that as well, Graham said.
The incident in question was a large fight that broke out July 22 at a house just off the WSU campus in Pullman. One WSU student was left with a broken jaw, and another — the man Barber was accused of injuring — sustained a concussion and injured wrist.
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The fallout from the fight was extensive. The police investigation took four months and involved interviews with more than 60 witnesses. Barber was accused of injuring the other WSU student and initially expelled from school by the school’s student-conduct board. He spent most of the fall — his final semester of college — fighting his expulsion.
Barber ultimately prevailed and was allowed to graduate. But in February, when the Whitman County Prosecutor concluded its investigation into the case, he was charged with second-degree felony assault and accused of causing the alleged victim’s concussion.
Prior to the trial, Graham said Barber…