On Monday, Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine announced that four Steubenville school officials were being indicted for their role in covering up the now infamous rape of a 16-year-old girl in August 2012 by two high school football players. But they've actually also been charged for doing the same with a similar case involving a 14-year-old that has barely been publicized until now.
Former Jezebel writer Katie J.M. Baker now of Newsweek notes that though some of the charges against these four officials involve the original Steubenville case, half of them are against two of the individuals for this separate, earlier rape in April 2012. Steubenville superintendent Michael McVey and elementary school principal Lynette Gorman were the ones indicted for both:
McVey's charges include a misdemeanor charge, alleging he made a false statement in April 2012. Gorman's charge of failing to report possible child abuse is also from April. The Attorney General's office confirmed that both charges were related to the alleged April rape but declined to comment on how or whether the cases of the 16-year-old and the 14-year-old were related.
According to the Attorney General's office, Gorman could face up to 30 days in jail if convicted and McVey could face five years and 270 days in prison for all of his offenses. Gorman's indictment concerns just April 12, 2012, while McVey's concerns the period of April 12, 2012 to November 19, 2013, covering the date range for both rape cases.
Baker reports that the lawyer who represented the Jane Doe in the original Steubenville case is also representing the girl in this other case. She also notes that sources in Steubenville believe this earlier sexual assault "involved Steubenville High School athletes and took place at a team coach's house," which students tweeted about at the time.
Given these new allegations, it's clear that despite the fact that Attorney General DeWine wants "to let Steubenville move on," it'll be difficult to do so. "This community has suffered a great deal," he said. "I know they desperately need to be able to put this matter behind them." To the Attorney General, a case like this is the last step to potentially healing now older wounds in Steubenville, but to the rest of the world, it's a fresh reminder of the flaws in this particular community and society at large.
Image via Keith Srakocic/AP