Pete Rose facing new sex-with-underage-girls story from 1970s

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Because the age of consent in OH was 16 at the time, the allegation would have constituted statutory rape, ESPN said in its report.

The revelation is part of another legal battle: Rose vs. John Dowd, the special counsel who oversaw MLB's investigation into Rose in the late 80s.

The sworn statement provided by the woman was contained in a motion filed in federal court Monday.

Genco told NJ Advance Media last summer that Dowd's accusations caused "real economic damages to Pete's reputation and marketability".

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In the interview, with a station in West Chester, Pennsylvania, Dowd said, "Michael Bertolini told us, you know, he not only ran bets, but ran young girls down at spring training, ages 12 to 14".

"This sexual relationship lasted for several years", she said. "Pete Rose also met me in locations outside of OH where we had sex". It's worth noting, however, that in OH (and in 21 other states) a person's belief that someone who has not reached the age of consent is, in fact, old enough to consent does not constitute a legal defense to a statutory rape charge.

In the statement, the woman claims that she met Rose in 1973 "when she was 14 or 15-years old". "Sometime after that, Pete Rose and I began meeting at a house in Cincinnati".

The former Reds manager admitted that the sex didn't begin until after the girl turned 16 and added that they never had sex outside Ohio. Either way, legal consequences for Rose seem unlikely given the amount of time that has passed since the alleged crime. He won the World Series MVP award that year and was named Sports Illustrated Sportsman of the Year.

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According to those court documents filed by Dowd's team on Monday, Rose acknowledged having a relationship with the woman in question but said he was led to believe that she was already 16 when it began. Rose refused, saying the request was too broad.

The attorney also accused Dowd of dragging "Pete's name through the mud".

Brooklyn-based attorney Martin Garbus, representing Rose in the defamation suit, said the woman's statement is a lie.

"At this point it's just a big distraction", Genco said. "It tips me off that really can't defend himself".

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Rose played baseball for the Reds from 1963-1978 and then for the Philadelphia Phillies from 1979-1983, returning to the Reds in 1984. In other words, all of these disturbing details are now coming out because of Rose's lawsuit against Dowd. Dowd's investigation, documented in the so-called "Dowd Report", concluded that he had, in violation of Major League Baseball rules.

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