At the center of the trial are Trent Mays, 17, and Ma'Lik Richmond, a 16-year-old African-American student, who have been charged with digitally penetrating a 16-year-old girl on Aug. 12. The alleged rape is said to have occurred in a car and, then, in the basement of a house. Mays also is charged with illegal use of a minor in nudity-oriented material.
The two teenagers have maintained their innocence. If convicted, Mays and Richmond could be held in a juvenile jail until they turn 21.
Two Steubenville, Ohio, high school students who hosted a party in which a girl was allegedly raped have been given immunity for videotaping portions of the incident.
One of the hosts testified that he saw the girl vomiting and speaking in a slurred pattern on the late night and early morning hours when the incident allegedly occurred. He said that he witnessed Mays penetrate the teenage girl and that he had erased portions of the video of the incident. The young men are members of the Steubenville High School football team.
"It was one of those moments when you realize you did something stupid and wrong that night, so I deleted it," the teenager responded, after being asked why he had deleted the video. The teen also testified that he saw Mays attempt to get the girl to perform oral sex on him while they were in his basement.
The case of the high school students has engrossed the small city of Steubenville, a onetime steel industry powerhouse. Some have suggested that more students should have been charged and there have been questions about whether the influence of the local football team might have played a role.
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(Photo: AP Photo/Keith Srakocic, Pool)