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Dailey's agent, Boston attorney Bob Woolf, says the public reaction to his client's problems has been "just like a lynching. I've never seen such vicious attacks. Even if he was guilty of everything the lady said, it wasn't that bad."
It is true that Dailey seems an unlikely person to be involved in such a sordid mess. A 21-year-old from Baltimore, he is the youngest of four brothers. (The oldest, Anthony, is a West Point graduate.) His mother and father died within a month of one another when he was 16. At first he lived with an aunt, and then he went to live with Howard and Delores Burton of Randallstown, Md., the parents of his girl friend, Wanda. Mrs. Burton's younger brother is Reggie Jackson, and Jackson and Dailey soon developed a close relationship. In fact, Dailey was in Jackson's entourage at the Yankee playoff victory party in Oakland last October when Jackson and Graig Nettles got into a fight over Reggie's guests.
At Cardinal Gibbons High in Baltimore, Dailey was a good student and an even better basketball player. In three years he scored 2,844 points and led the team to two straight Catholic League championships. He was never in trouble. Ray Muliis, his coach at Cardinal Gibbons, recalled in a letter to Dailey's probation officer, "The worst thing that Quintin did during his three years on the varsity basketball team was to oversleep and be late for a team meeting during a Christmas tournament. As team captain, Quintin was very responsible and did an outstanding job. In fact, during a Christmas tournament his junior year, a couple of players decided to have a beer in their room. Before one beer was finished, Quintin was knocking on my door and saying, 'Coach, we have a problem.' "
Although sought after by 200 schools, the 6'4", 180-pound Dailey chose San Francisco, where he averaged 20.5 points a game and played on teams that won 71 of 91 games in three seasons. But it all began to fall apart—for him and ultimately the USF basketball program—in the early morning hours of last Dec. 21. The alleged events of that night and the days following are recounted here in considerable detail to delineate the terrible nature of Dailey's assault, a crime for which he might not have been punished.
Those events could not have begun more innocuously. At approximately 1 a.m. the resident adviser on the third floor of Phelan Hall, a girls' section of the dormitory, heard a noise outside in the hall. The R.A., a 5'4", 130-pound, blonde senior nursing major, went out to investigate and saw Dailey and teammate Eric Booker carrying a mattress from the adjacent men's annex toward the elevator. When she asked them what they were doing, Dailey said he was taking his mattress down to a room on the second floor for the Christmas break. She told him to make sure he returned it to his room before he left. Dailey and Booker said, "Cool," and got on the elevator while the young woman went back to her room. At around 3 a.m. she fell asleep, but at about 3:45 she was awakened in the darkened room. "I rolled over, opened my eyes and saw Quintin standing over me," she testified in a closed preliminary hearing on March 22. She said she asked, "Quintin, what are you doing in my room?" and he said, "Your door was open." According to the woman, the door wasn't open but had been left unlatched. She said to him, "It is awfully late."
Q. (by Assistant District Attorney William Fazio): And what did Mr. Dailey respond to that statement by you?
A. He sat down on the bed, and he, he said he had had his eyes on me for a long time.
Q. How far was he sitting from you at that time?
A. About six inches.
The woman said she smelled alcohol on Dailey's breath and recalled Dailey's saying he had been partying on the second floor of Phelan Hall with Ken McAlister, the captain of the basketball team, and Booker. She tried to engage him in small talk and told him that she would prefer to discuss things at a later date because she wanted to go to sleep. He then asked her to kiss him.