Jury: No charges in Ohio University Rape Case
October 28, 2013
ATHENS (Kate Liebers) — An Athens County Grand Jury declined to issue an indictment in an alleged rape case, which had gained national attention after it was filmed by passers-by at Ohio University.
The videos show a man apparently giving a woman oral sex during the Oct. 12 homecoming celebration. The woman was leaning against a wall at Chase Bank, 2 S. Court St, in clear view of the passing crowds.
No person involved in the incident is facing charges – not the man for the rape, the woman for false accusations, nor the bystanders for videotaping.
Prosecutor Keller Blackburn said the video showed the woman smiling during the incident. It also showed the man asking if he should stop and the woman telling him to continue.
The man and the woman went to the man’s apartment after the incident, Blackburn reported. They stayed there for three hours before he walked her home.
Blackburn said both people were surprised when they saw the video online.
The woman reported the incident to Athens police as rape. She told investigators she had no memory of what she had seen circulating on Instagram.
Police made no arrests prior to the grand jury’s assembly.
Ohio University representatives would not reveal what action it plans to take in response to the sexual act or the mistakenly identified student.
“In addition to the criminal investigation, the University is following its own internal policies and procedures to investigate the circumstances related to the incident” and “the details of that investigation are not public,” a university spokesperson said in a release.
The case has stirred people in Athens County and beyond. Some were outraged that people stood by and watched instead of intervening. Others attacked the woman, doubting the legitimacy of her claims.
A popular Twitter account, @Anon_Central, accused the woman of lying about the incident to save her reputation. The account tried to identify the woman in the photos and claimed to have found her.
Police later confirmed the group had named the wrong woman. The falsely identified woman, Rachel Cassidy, said she feared leaving her house after the vitriolic attacks online.