NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — A rape charge has been withdrawn for the former co-owner of three businesses in downtown Norfolk.

Damian Livingston had the charge nolle prosequi in a pre-trial motion on Tuesday in Norfolk Circuit Court, records show.

Livingston was the co-owner of three establishments, Culture Lounge & RestaurantCanvas Social Cuisine and Cork & Co. Wine & Martini Bar, at the time when he was arrested on the rape charge back in July 2022. Both Culture and Cork & Co. have since closed their doors.

The woman who accused Livingston said the alleged crime happened back on May 30, 2022, saying in a statement that Livingston raped her in a hotel room after she had been drinking heavily.

Norfolk Commonwealth’s Attorney Ramin Fatehi gave the following statement:

In light of forensic evidence that the Commonwealth has received since the defendant’s arrest, we are not in a position to go forward with the case at this time. To protect the integrity of the case, I have no further comment.

Ramin Fatehi

The nolle prosequi motion means the charge could be brought back at a later date.