Video causes web furor over OH athletes' rape case

Published on NewsOK Modified: January 4, 2013 at 5:33 pm •  Published: January 4, 2013
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Kidnapping charges against both defendants were dropped after a probable cause hearing, according to the court. The visiting judge has ruled the case will remain in juvenile court, not be moved to adult court.

Authorities continue pleading for anyone with information about what happened to come forward, and the investigation has spurred heated commentary online. Some support the defendants and question the character of the teenage girl, while others allege a cover-up or contend more people should be charged.

The latter group includes hacker-activists associating under the Anonymous and KnightSec labels who point to comments they say were posted around the time of the alleged attack on social media by several people who are not charged. A peaceful protest publicized by the hackers drew scores of people to the local courthouse last weekend.

In a related issue, student Cody Saltsman and his family sued a blogger and anonymous posters to her blog site in a case that arose from online comments suggesting the student might have been involved but not charged. The suit was settled with the operator of the crime blog acknowledging that there was no evidence of Saltsman's involvement in the rape, and Saltsman apologizing in a statement for tweets he sent the night of the alleged attack.

The alleged victim, who doesn't attend Steubenville schools, is "doing as well as I guess could be expected," said Bob Fitzsimmons, an attorney for her family. He said the publicity and online commentary has been tough on her family.

It's possible she could be compelled to testify in court next month, but that decision is up to prosecutors, Fitzsimmons said. He declined to comment on any facts of the case, including whether or how the victim knew Mays and Richmond.

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Kantele Franko can be reached on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/kantele10 .



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