Thursday , Nov , 13 , 2003 C.Y. Ellis

Bryant makes first appearance before trial judge

Eagle, CO (Sports Network) – Los Angeles Lakers guard Kobe Bryant had his
initial hearing in front of the judge that will preside over his sexual
assault trial.

During the 12-minute proceeding on Thursday at Eagle County Courthouse, the
defense waived Bryant’s rights to be advised of the charge against him and the
penalty he faces if convicted — four years to life in prison and 20 years to
life on probation.

Bryant did not enter a plea. Had a formal plea been entered, state law
requires the trial be scheduled within six months unless Bryant waives his
right to a speedy trial.

“We have decided to follow the court’s usual procedure and not enter a plea as
of today,” defense attorney Pamela Mackey said. “I fully advised my client of
the charge against him and the possible penalty.”

Meanwhile, District Judge Terry Ruckriegle decided not to change Bryant’s
$25,000 bail.

A pretrial hearing was set for December 19 and another for January 23 to
settle various motions. Attorneys from both sides told the judge that after
the hearing, they would most likely need two to three weeks to prepare for a

Bryant was charged with felony sexual assault after his accuser, a 19-year-old
Colorado woman, said he raped her on June 30 at a mountain resort where she
worked, and where he was a guest. The Lakers’ star has maintained the sex
was consensual.