FORT PIERCE, Fla. - The attorney for Sharieff Rhaheed-Muhammad, a star football player at Fort Pierce Central accused of impregnating a 14-year-old girl last summer, said his client is shaken by what's happening.
Bob Watson said he told Rhaheed it's important to stay on a regular schedule. That includes going back to class as his case plays out in the legal system.
Watson says the case involving Rhaheed involves two juveniles and he says juvenile cases are complicated, and confidential.
"I understand why there might be interest in it, but the privacy of the young people involved should outweigh any interest in the story," said Watson from his office in Martin County.
Watson said his client is a very polite kid.
"He is a very well respected young man. Well liked by teammates and coaches. And the notoriety here has certainly put some things in jeopardy," said Watson.
That thing is a football scholarship to the University of Louisville. No decision has been made yet by the university over whether it will pull that offer. Watson says he hopes the school will wait for the legal process to run its course.
"I think the court case will go well for him, but there are public interests and private interests that are involved," said Watson.
Watson is hoping the publicity this case has brought won't bring out additional problems for the two teens involved now, or in the future.
"To have a lot of notoriety brought to them about something that might not be their proudest moment can have lasting effects on these kids," said Watson.
Sharieff Rhaheed-Muhammad faces one felony count of lewd and lascivious behavior. The family of the other teen involved said they don't want to proceed with prosecution. The State Attorney's office has 90 days to determine if they will proceed and if the 17-year-old will be prosecuted as an adult. If this case is adjudicated in juvenile court, any punishment that may be handed down would expire on Rhaheed's 19th birthday.