Alleged Conn. teen rape victim taunted on social media
HARTFORD, Connecticut (AP) — A 13-year-old girl who accused two high school football players of raping her is being taunted on social media, in a case very similar to one in Ohio that led to the rape conviction of two high school athletes over the weekend.
Two 18-year-old high school players in the state of Connecticut, Edgar Gonzalez and Joan Toribio, were charged Monday with felony second-degree sexual assault and other crimes last month in cases involving different 13-year-old girls. Toribio also was charged two weeks ago in another second-degree sexual assault case.
A state judge sealed details of the allegations from public view. Both teens have pleaded not guilty to all charges. The arrests were first reported by The Register Citizen newspaper.
At least one of the alleged victims has been taunted on social media by dozens of upset classmates, the newspaper reported. Students have called a girl a "whore" and bashed her for "snitching" and "ruining" the players' lives.
State prosecutor Terri Sonnemann declined to comment on the sexual assault cases and on whether authorities are investigating the online taunts.
Gonzalez's lawyer, J. Patten Brown III, said he hasn't seen the state's evidence yet, but has been told the charges allege consensual, but statutorily illegal, sex. He said Gonzalez is not making any admissions about having relations with the girl and intends to fight the charges.
"Oftentimes people are arrested and when all the facts come out they're different than what people assumed," Brown said.
A message was left Wednesday for Toribio's attorney, Charles Brower.
In the Ohio case, Attorney General Mike DeWine said the teen girl is being victimized by threats against her on Twitter and he demanded an end to such postings. The case bitterly divided the city and led to accusations of a cover-up to protect the athletes.
Police said little about the Connecticut accusations in news releases, except that Gonzalez and Toribio were arrested in connection with alleged sexual encounters with 13-year-old girls.
Toribio has posted $100,000 bail for the two sexual assault cases.
Gonzalez is being detained on $65,000 bail. He also has pleaded not guilty in an alleged robbery case from last year that remains pending.
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