HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — Two Connecticut high school football players have been charged in sexual assault cases that, like a recent high-profile Ohio rape case, have led to online taunts directed at an accuser.
The two 18-year-old Torrington High School players, Edgar Gonzalez and Joan Toribio, were charged with felony second-degree sexual assault and other crimes last month in cases involving different 13-year-old girls. Toribio also was charged two weeks ago in another second-degree sexual assault case.
A state judge sealed details of the allegations from public view. Both teens have pleaded not guilty to all charges. The arrests were first reported by The Register Citizen newspaper.
On Wednesday evening, Torrington police Lt. Michael Emanuel said a third student, a 17-year-old boy, was charged this month with second-degree sexual assault on one of the two 13-year-olds linked to the football players' cases.
Emanuel said the assault occurred last fall. He had no information about the 17-year-old's arraignment or any bail.
At least one more arrest involving the same accusers is likely in the case, he said.
The accusers and suspects knew one another, according to Emanuel, who described what happened as "voluntary encounters" at private residences. But he said sexual encounters between a 13-year-old and anyone more than three years older are illegal under state law.
At least one of the accusers in Torrington, nearly 30 miles west of the capital, Hartford, has been taunted on social media by dozens of upset classmates, the newspaper reported. Students have called the girl a "whore" and bashed her for "snitching" and "ruining" the players' lives.
State prosecutor Terri Sonnemann declined to comment on the sexual assault cases and on whether authorities are investigating the online taunts.