Rogers, a lesbian and a former University of Nebraska women's basketball star, became a face for anti-gay hate crimes after the alleged attack. Reports of the alleged assault outraged the gay community, and hundreds of people participated in rallies outside the Nebraska capitol building, and at a park in Omaha.
Police charged Rogers with false reporting after disclosing evidence that contradicted her story and pointed to a faked attack.
Mark Potok of the Southern Poverty Law Center, which tracks hate crimes, told ABCNews.com today, "There's a real danger in the entire notion of hate crimes coming into question."
"These kinds of reports, for whatever reason they are made, are incredibly destructive," Potok said. "[They] cast into doubt the very real number of hate crimes that happen every day."
About 200,000 hate crimes occur in the United States every year, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center, with a "vastly smaller number that turn out to be bogus."
Potok added, "We spoke to people on the [Winnsboro]City Council yesterday and heard universally that this was a town that was at peace in terms of race relations."