3 Santa Rosa hockey players accused of sexual assault to appear in Reno court next week

Moses James Matthews III, 33, Dominic Jones, 33, and Josiah John Nikkel, 30, members of the Santa Rosa Growlers hockey club, was arrested in Washoe County, Nevada for sexual assault. (Washoe County Sheriff’s Office via Bay City News)

Three Santa Rosa hockey players arrested in February on suspicion of sexual assault are due to be arraigned in a Reno, Nevada courtroom on April 14, according to the Washoe County District Attorney's Office.     

The men, Dominic Jones, 34, Josiah Nikkel, 30, and Moses Matthews, 33, were players with the Santa Rosa Growlers until the news of their Feb. 5 arrests came out, and they were removed from the team.   

All three were arrested on one felony count of sexual assault and Matthews is facing an additional felony count of unlawful dissemination of an intimate image and a misdemeanor count of capturing, distributing, or displaying an image of the private area of another person, according to court records.     

A recently obtained police report of the night in question gives each person's version of events-- the three suspects and the alleged victim, though according to the police, the suspects gave conflicting accounts over the course of at least two interviews. All three men told the police that any and all sex with the alleged victim was consensual. The alleged victim told police that she was held down while all three men assaulted her.     

All allegations below are taken from the official police report and have not been proven in court.   

According to the police report, the woman met Moses Matthews at The Stick Sports Lounge in Reno on Feb. 3. The two later went to his hotel room and had consensual sex, the alleged victim told police. Matthews' teammates, who were also staying in the room, were not there at that point. All three were in town for a game against the Reno Ice Raiders, the first of their season.     

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Later, Josiah Nikkel and Dominic Jones returned to the room and the four of them sat around talking and drinking, according to the police report. The alleged victim told the police that Matthews asked her to spend the night and she was at first hesitant, but he allegedly showed her his "marshall's badge" (sic) indicating that he was in "some sort of law enforcement" and could be trusted, so she agreed to stay, she said.     

Matthews denied ever showing the woman a badge but the police report states that the woman took a picture of the badge with Matthews posing in the background.     

According to the alleged victim in the police report, Matthews agreed to take her home to fetch an overnight bag, which he denied, according to the police. Police say the alleged victim's roommate corroborated her story that she came home to grab an overnight bag. The police report stated that hotel surveillance footage recorded all the team's comings and goings with time stamps.     

The alleged victim said that when they returned to the hotel, the two queen beds had been shoved together. The suspects claim that they did so for space, so as not to have to share one queen bed with another man. According to the police report, the other two hockey players were not in the room at this time, which was approximately 2:37 a.m.     

Matthews and the woman proceeded to have consensual sex again, she told police. The woman alleges that when Matthews was on top of her, his teammates Nikkel and Jones entered the room and began undressing. She alleges that Matthews then held her down while Jones penetrated her.     

"She lay there crying and felt unable to move or say no," the police report said.   

The alleged victim told police that she felt the whole thing had been "orchestrated."     

The police report also alleges that Nikkel also sexually assaulted the woman orally.     

When she could free her arms, she told police in the report, she alleges that she grabbed her phone and called a friend to come and get her. She told police that she told Matthews, "This was not OK."     

The report states that Matthews drove her home. At 5:10 a.m. Matthews allegedly texted her, "Baby (expletive) I feel so bad."   

The next morning, Reno police arrived at the hotel to speak with Matthews. In the police report, they allege that they asked him if he knew why they were there and that Matthews replied, "Probably about last night."

Police said all three suspects refused to go to the police station to be questioned. Police reported that all three consented to DNA swabs, having their cell phones examined, and the bed sheets being collected as evidence.     

In the police report, the officer notes that Matthews said that all the sex was consensual. Officers allege that Matthews said that the alleged victim "showed interest" in Jones and Nikkel as well and engaged in consensual intercourse with them. Matthews denied taking the alleged victim to get her overnight bag, which police say her roommate corroborated, and he denied sending her the "Baby (expletive) I feel so bad" text. Police claim they have the text as evidence.     

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In an interview with Jones, the police report claims he said he had sex with the alleged victim but that it was consensual. Police claim The report states that Jones told them that he could have "'possibly made a mistake' in interpreting the signs of consent."     

Nikkel also said he had consensual oral sex with the alleged victim. The suspects also allegedly told police that both beds had been pushed together the entire evening, which police reported can be refuted by cellphone pictures from earlier in the evening that show the beds apart.     

Police claim that when looking at Matthews' cellphone, they found a picture of the alleged victim having sex with him that she was unaware had been taken. Police claim the picture was texted to Nikkel's phone with the message, "I'll be back after I (expletive her)," to which Nikkel allegedly texted back, "Do U N***a."     Police allege that this was a crime, as the "intimate image" was taken and sent without the alleged victim's knowledge or consent. In the report, police claim Matthews admitted sending the picture.     

According to the police report, the woman had a SART exam (Sexual Assault Response Team) which revealed an "injury" to a part of her body that blacked out in the report.     

Police allege that on the following day, the suspects were interviewed at the police station, and "each suspect changed their original statements and provided statements which were inconsistent with the ones they provided the day before."     

All three suspects maintained that the sex was consensual, police reported. All three denied that the alleged victim had been held down during the events. They denied hearing her say, "This isn't what I signed up for."

"They all had varying stories of how the other suspects engaged in sexual activity with the victim," reads the police report.     

The report concludes with this: "The victim's story and timeline had not changed since her first interview. The victim's timeline was further corroborated by hotel surveillance, cell phone examinations, eyewitness testimony, and SART exam results... The following day the victim responded to the police station to deliver her cell phone for an exam and was still visibly shaken and crying."   

Dominic Jones was contacted for this story and declined to comment. Moses Matthews and Josiah Nikkel were also contacted but did not respond.