Pitino phone message to Sypher revealed
Fox 41 News played a phone message Karen Sypher says she got from Pitino six years ago, after she told him she was pregnant.
Rick Pitinio: "Hey Karen, it's Rick. I'm with my son out in California. We're doing (inaudible). He's in the shower right now.
"Um, like I said before, you know, this is not something that, uh, you know, I can decide on. I think that the best thing in all scenarios is to go through with it, but that it has to be your call because it's the, it's uh, (inaudible).
"As far as, you know, I'm a married man with five children. You're (inaudible) with four children. You know, I'm a high profile person. The best thing, the fact, that I can't make that decision that's got to be on by the way you put it, put it behind you and then move on. And then that's gonna be (inaudible).
"You know, but, um... I think, I really can't give you any advice, except I have thought about it. And I, ummm, this is a very unfortunate situation. And uh, I think in unfortunate situations like this, the scenario is (inaudible) right now. Um, but I'll get up in the morning early and I'll give you a call. You just let me know what you're gonna do (inaudible)."
Fox 41's Candyce Clifft reported on background leading to Sypher's claims, the federal case, police investigation and Pitino's apology. Karen Sypher says she met Rick Pitino at the bar at Porcini that night in August 2003. Pitino told police he'd been drinking. Sypher says the two talked about her sons and their interest in sports. She says it got late and the restaurant started to clear out.
"He actually, everyone had left at that time, and Tim Coury came up to Rick and I and said, 'Here are the keys.' I remember him handing Rick the keys and saying, 'Please lock up.' I'll see you tomorrow," Sypher said.
Sypher says not long after that, Pitino raped her in a nearby booth. Pitino told police Sypher came onto him and the two had consensual sex. Afterward, Sypher drove him home.
"I said, 'Can't you have someone else take you home? No one knows about this, and you need to take me home,' Sypher said in an exclusive Fox 41 News earlier this year.
She says Pitino gave her his card and told her to call if she ever needed anything. She did call about two weeks later to tell him she was pregnant.
Pitino told police Sypher told him she was going to have an abortion. Pitino's attorney says Pitino gave her $3,000 for medical insurance. Sypher says U of L equipment manager Tim Sypher took her to Cincinnati to have the abortion.
"He said Rick told him to schedule everything. Set it up, and I want it out of town," Sypher said.
About eight months after this, Karen Sypher married Tim Sypher and the two of them had a daughter.
Karen Sypher's encounter became an issue again for Pitino when he received three anonymous voice messages on his cell phone.
"Why would you do somethin' like that? But, naw, I'm not out to get money. I don't want no part of that, but I want you to do the right thing by that woman. You need to do the right thing, that's all," the caller said.
Sypher says that day, February 26th of this year, Pitino called her to a meeting in his office at the Yum! Center.
"He knew some details that Rick thought nobody else could know those details. 'Nobody else could know those details, Karen. Who exactly is this?'" Sypher said.
Sypher says Pitino asked her to come back for a second meeting after practice that evening. This time, she brought her son Jacob Wise with her.
"He goes, first of all, Jake, I'd like to apologize for the unfortunate event that occurred, and he said, 'I want you to know that I'm sorry I am. But, I want you to know I was drinking a lot that night. I've had a lot of drinks,'" Sypher said.
Jacob says the meeting concluded with Pitino making several offers to make Sypher's life better.
"He goes, 'I would like to get your mother a new car. I would like to find her a house. By the end of... by the end of the tournament, we will have your mother a new car,'" Sypher said.