The Steubenville school district's technology director has retired after being charged with evidence tampering in an investigation about whether other laws were broken in a rape case involving two athletes.
STEUBENVILLE, Ohio - Three "material witnesses," including the alleged victim, must now stand trial according to Walter Madison, attorney for one of the accused high school football players, 16-year-old Ma'lik Richmond, in the Steubenville trial expected to begin Wednesday.
Attorneys representing the two defendants attended a hearing held Tuesday night, where Madison said among things argued was whether the three witnesses from West Virginia would be subpoenaed to testify in court in the trial of 16-year-old Ma'lik Richmond and 17-year-old Trent Mays.
Madison told NewsChannel5 a motion to dismiss the case against his client was made saying the unavailability of "material witnesses" denies both boys the right to a fair trial.
"There's really one option left and that's to dismiss the charges. I know it's not a popular option, but you know, I get asked a lot, 'How would I feel if this were my daughter involved?' Well I will retort, 'How would every Ohioan feel if that was their child and they don't have an opportunity to defend themselves," said Madison earlier Tuesday.
"We won," was what he said over the phone shortly before 10:15 p.m. Tuesday night.
A West Virginia judge last week rejected requests that three juveniles be called to testify at the eastern Ohio trial, all part of the complexities of this case that involves teenagers from across state lines.
Madison told NewsChannel5 one of the three juveniles subpoenaed is the alleged victim, a 16-year-old West Virginia girl both Richmond and Mays are accused of raping last August.
Of the two other "material witnesses" involved, their testimonies are expected to bolster the the players' defense against the charges, reported the Associated Press.
Meanwhile, with the trial expected to begin 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, Steubenville officials held a news conference of their own early Tuesday afternoon.
"Regardless of the outcome, the case shouldn't be reflective of our town. Steubenville is a good place and we are proud to be from Steubenville," said City Manager, Cathy Davison.
Davison, along with the Steubenville Police Chief, Jefferson County Chamber of Commerce President and even a local business owner, addressed reporters in a 2 p.m. City Hall news conference, describing what the town has experienced ever since the case made national headlines and went viral online.
"Because of the unparalleled scrutiny the city has received because of this case, it's resulted in hundreds of media requests from the U.S., Europe and Canada ..." Davison said.
Hundreds descended on Steubenville's County Courthouse to protest in recent months, ever since an online hacker group released photo and video connected to the alleged attack sparking anger and rumors, according to Steubenville city officials, of a cover-up to protect football players in a town where football is king.
Mays and Richmond will stand trial as juveniles inside the Jefferson County Justice Center on charges they attacked the 16-year-old West Virginia girl in an alcohol fueled party last August.
Their attorneys have denied the charges.
NewsChannel5 will have coverage and updates on the trial from Steubenville, Ohio. Keep checking newsnet5.com for more information.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
A grand jury investigating whether other laws were broken in connection with the rape of a 16-year-old girl last year charged a woman with theft Wednesday after uncovering evidence of alleged crimes unrelated to the rape.
An eastern Ohio grand jury investigating whether other crimes were broken in the case of a West Virginia girl raped last year has reconvened for at least two days.
An eastern Ohio school employee pleaded not guilty Wednesday to tampering with evidence and three other counts brought by a grand jury investigating whether other laws were broken in the rape of a 16-year-old girl.
A court hearing is planned for an eastern Ohio school employee charged with tampering with evidence by a grand jury investigating whether other laws were broken in the case of a 16-year-old girl raped last year.
An Ohio school employee tampered with evidence beginning on the night of an alcohol-fueled party last year after which two high school football players raped a 16-year-old girl, according to an indictment released Tuesday.
A special grand jury has indicted a Steubenville City Schools employee for obstructing justice in the Steubenville rape case, the Ohio Attorney General's Office announced on Monday.
The grand jury investigating whether other laws were broken in the case of a 16-year-old girl raped in eastern Ohio last year has hit the five-month mark without criminal charges.
One of the two Ohio high school football players convicted this year of raping a 16-year-old girl is appealing his sex-offender classification.
Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine says he can't offer a timeline for when a grand jury will finish considering whether other crimes might have occurred in the rape of a 16-year-old West Virginia girl last year.