Ryan Ruff after rape charge dropped: 'I'm going to hold my head high'

Kai Porter, KOB Eyewitness News 4
Updated: 04/21/2016 4:11 PM
Created: 06/25/2014 7:37 PM

KOB Eyewitness News 4 is looking into what is next for the three men who claim they were wrongly accused of raping a UNM student. Criminal charges of rape and kidnapping were dropped against two of the men and are expected to be dropped against the third. 

Ryan Ruff, the CNM student who was charged along with two Lobo football players, SaQwan Edwards and Crusoe Gongbay, said the allegations have nearly destroyed his life. 

“Once the cases are officially dropped and everything goes back to normal I’m going to hold my head high,” said Ruff, who sat down for an interview with KOB on Wednesday. “I want to finish school. I want to go back to work."

In April, a UNM student told police she was raped at gunpoint inside Ruff's BMW. Police arrested Ruff, Edwards and Gongbay. During a news conference Tuesday, Ruff's lawyer told reporters he has cell phone video and witnesses that can prove the woman lied about the rape.

“I was wrongfully accused,” said Ruff Wednesday. “I’m innocent."

Criminal charges against Ruff and Gongbay have been dropped and the charges against Edwards are expected to be dropped this week. However, the District Attorney said she may re-file the charges at any time. Ruff, who is originally from Baltimore, wants to follow in his family's footsteps and work in law enforcement.

“That seems impossible with a rape charge and a kidnapping charge on my record,” he said. “That needs to be removed. That needs to be expunged as soon as possible."

Edwards and Gongbay were both were suspended from the football team. On Wednesday UNM said that hasn't changed. It’s now up to the football coach and vice president of athletics to decide if they get to play again.

“This is their last year,” said Ruff. “They plan on entering the draft. I want to see my friends succeed. I want to see myself succeed."

KOB reached out to lawyers for Edwards and Gongbay. We also asked the lawyer for woman who made the allegations for comment. We haven't heard back from any of them. The DA said she is looking at DNA evidence and waiting for UNM police to submit the full case before they made a decision about whether or not to re-file charges.

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