Ma’lik Richmond, 16, and Trent Mays, 17, both football players at Steubenville High School, were captured in damning photo and video evidence carrying the girl and talking about the incident afterward, referring to her as “dead” in her drunken state.
The 16-year-old girl said she awoke naked in an unfamiliar house, unaware of what had taken place until she saw the pictures.
“They kept telling me I was a hassle and they took care of me,” she testified. “I thought I could trust him (Mays) until I saw the pictures and video.”
Mays and Richmond face juvenile detention until the age of 21. Both boys broke into tears as the verdict was read Sunday. Judge Tom Lipps sentenced Richmond to at least one year in juvenile jail, and up to two years for Mays. In addition to the sexual assault charges, Mays was also found guilty of illegal use of a minor in nudity-oriented material. Ohio’s attorney general may announce additional charges in the case later on Sunday.
The case gained national attention because of an alleged cover-up within the small football-centric community. Additionally, local law enforcement was criticized for not pursuing charges against other members of Steubenville High’s “Big Red” football team who were at the Aug. 11 party where the crime took place.
Three other boys where present while the crime was being committed, but chose to record it rather than intervene. They were granted immunity for their testimony in the case against Richmond and Mays. They told the court that the girl was unaware of what was happening at the time, and that she was penetrated digitally in a car and on a basement floor.