Kent State University reviewing incoming freshman student's involvement in Steubenville rape case

KENT, Ohio - Kent State University officials are closely monitoring the Steubenville rape case, including reviewing the status of a star athlete who intends to come to KSU.

"University leaders are closely monitoring the ongoing investigation in Steubenville. Once all the information has been gathered, appropriate action will be taken if warranted," said Eric Mansfield, executive director of media relations for the university, in an email.

A Steubenville High School senior applied to be part of the KSU freshman class beginning in the fall. His letter of intent for athletics is for wrestling, not football.

At this point, the senior has not been charged or identified as a person directly involved in the Steubenville rape case.

His status coming to Kent State came into question after a 2012 rape video involving football players at Steubenville High School was recently leaked.

The New York Times reported the August investigation shows a high school teen joking about the alleged rape and the unconscious state of the 16-year-old West Virginia girl involved.

Football players Trent Mays and Ma'lik Richmond have both been charged with sexual assault in connection to the rape, according to Steubenville police, and stand trial in February.

Kent State officials acknowledged the Steubenville rape story on the university's Facebook page Saturday, as thousands gathered for a rally outside the Jefferson County Court House.

"University leaders are aware of the developing investigation in Steubenville, and we are gathering information from the proper authorities."

Several people have commented on the posting, including one man who said, "Kent needs to take a strong stand against rape culture! Give the "rape crew" the boot and give the scholarship to someone that deserves it."

One publication notes the senior's mother is a county prosecuting attorney, and that the alleged rape happened at their house. Officials have not confirmed this information to NewsChannel5.

Kent State University officials are taking every precaution surrounding the case. "We realize the concern of the community, and getting all of the facts is our top priority," Mansfield said in an email.

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