The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) stated on Thursday that charges of attempted rape and assault against Manchester United footballer Mason Greenwood had been withdrawn due to the withdrawal of key witnesses. According to the CPS, a charge of controlling and coercive behavior had also been dismissed.
“In this case, a combination of the withdrawal of key witnesses and additional material that came to light meant there was no longer a realistic possibility of conviction,” a spokesperson for the CPS said in a statement. We have an obligation to stop the case in these circumstances. We have informed all parties of our decision.
“We would always encourage any prospective victims to come forward and report to police, and we will prosecute wherever our legal criteria is met,” said the prosecutor.
CNN reached out to Greenwood’s legal counsel for comment, but did not receive a response right away. Greenwood, according to The Guardian, disputed the attempted rape claims.
“Manchester United notes the Crown Prosecution Service’s decision that all charges against Mason Greenwood have been dismissed,” a statement from the club stated on Thursday.
“The club will now conduct its own process before choosing next steps.” “We will not say further until that process is completed.”
Greater Manchester Police’s (GMP) head of public safety, Chief Superintendent Michaela Kerr, said in a statement that the decision to withdraw charges was not “taken lightly” and reaffirmed “GMP’s commitment to investigating accusations of violence against women and girls.”
“If you believe you are or may be a victim, please don’t allow this case discourage you from seeking help,” Kerr added.
In October 2022, Greenwood was charged with attempted rape, controlling and coercive behavior, and Section 47 assault on a woman.
Greenwood was arrested in January 2022 after recordings and photographs surfaced on social media. The 21-year-old, who has represented England once, was suspended by Manchester United the following month and has not appeared for the club since.