Steubenville Teenagers Found Guilty of Rape
The two teenagers accused of raping a sixteen year old girl from West Virginia were found guilty in juvenile court this past Sunday. The two star football players were both sentenced to one year in the state juvenile system for the sexual assault. One of the players must also serve an additional year for the distribution of a nude photograph of a minor. The State Department of Youth Services has the ability to keep the two young men in the juvenile system until they are 21. They must also be registered as sex offenders once they are released.
Because the accused are teenagers, they had a non-jury trial decided by a judge. Judge Thomas Lipps presided over the case and found them delinquent, which is the juvenile equivalent for guilty. Much of the evidence for the case came in the form of social media distributed by the defendants themselves as the victim did not remember the attack. Judge Lipps described the evidence as "profane and ugly" and a cautionary tale of teenagers with alcohol and "how you record things on social media that are so prevalent today."
The two football players were accused of raping a 16 year old classmate in August after she became intoxicated at a house party. Witnesses tweeted and posted video of the attack on social media sites, and the case went viral.
Media Resources: NBC News 3/17/13; New York Times 3/17/13; Feminist Newswire 3/14/13