The Asotin County prosecutor’s office has dropped all charges against a WSU alumnus accused of raping a college-aged student.
Jared Druffel, 23, was arrested for second degree rape in late April. After a police investigation, prosecutor Ben Nichols found that the case was “unsuited for prosecution” on June 6.
“I came to the conclusion that there was insufficient evidence to go forward with formal charges at this time,” Nichols said. “Of significance to this position is both the lack of corroborative evidence and issues of credibility.”
Nichols said he was unable to acquire a statement from the alleged victim.
He added that, should other witnesses come forward or more evidence is uncovered, he will reconsider his decision.
On May 1, Whitman County Prosecutor Denis Tracy appointed Nichols to act as legal counsel on behalf of Whitman County due to due to a conflict of interest between Druffel and the Whitman County Prosecutor’s office. He did not explain what the conflict was.
Nichols said he was unsure of what the conflict of interest was, but when a victim or defendant has ties to an official within the prosecutor’s office, the office tends to look for outside review of the case.