As I observed in my piece at The Nation last week, I have been watching the controversy and outrage over the sexual assualts and alleged coverup in Steubenville, Ohio, for weeks, partly because my wife's family lives nearbym and I have visited that city many times. Here were my Monday updates, with Tuesday's below.
8:20 USA Today with new piece on judge, in Cincinnati area, who will preside over the trial starting Feb. 13, if not postponed. As we know, he got appointed after locals begged out. Trial could be moved to Cincy but not necessarily. Did not know he had already turned down one request to close it to the public when it does happen. Story notes his long career in juvenile justice but unclear what other markers to look for.
7:00 Fraternal Order of Police in Steubenville dropped its phone solicitation company after a woman reported call for donation in which man on the line referred to rape case and IDed school that victim attends and other info... AP reports that schools chief in Steubenville has ordered armed guards to four buildings to make students feel safer. This came before today's lockdown after a bogus threat was posted on Facebook--or so a student said.
it all here.
If this interview is accurate, we learn that LocalLeaks editor is based abroad, with staffers and volunteers, and an attorney, there and elsewhere, and with surprising difficulties in storing data and tips and having to use a wall--not unlike Homeland's Carrie Matheson--to track the tips, rather than a software program.
4:10 p.m. Full raw video of local TV interview with @KYanonymous posted. He attacks those making threats against school and students, denies any hacking that broke law, reports rumor that someone's trying to sell one video for $5000, and more. "We are a peaceful people" and against all
3:15 Megan Carpentier at The Guardian with op ed, on his this case exposes the "cruelty" faced by rape survivors.
3:00 p.m Lengthy Q & A at Huff Post with Anonymous "editor in chief" of the LocalLeaks files on the case.
12:30 p.m. Poynter collects and links to a few different views of the difficulties the media face in covering the case due to mixed feelings about role of Anonymous and other issues.... Meanwhile that widely-posted and infographic on rapes, unreported rapes, and false accusations deeply questioned today.
9:40 All Steubenville schools in lockdown this morning, their first ever. Superintendent "said police told him there was some type of shooting threat made on social media. He was informed by police about the threat around 8:30 a.m. Tuesday. McVey initially told NEWS9 over the phone that the threat was geared toward Harding Middle School, and later said it the threat was made against an unspecified building in the district." UPDATE: Lockdown lifted about 10 a.m.
9:05 a.m. Former guardians of one of defendants, Ma'Lik Richmond, say on Today show they still support him and he's getting bad deal. Richmond is again staying with them under house arrest. The Agrestas sit with Matt Lauer and Richmond's attorney, Walter Madison. Woman claims he was "surprised" when charged, "out of character" for him. Lauer presses for what Richmond told them but they deflect, just say they support him no matter what. When Lauer asks if they think he did anything wrong, they pause, and attorney jumps in to prevent any reply. Madison again claims can't get fair trial.
has a full piece about the actress. “There’s no doubt in my mind that that experience really set the stage
for me to go into porn and do all those things,” she said. “These are
not things you start doing because everything is OK.” She says her mother was raped in Steubenville, as well, and things are still very tough for women there.
8:40 #ShoutingBack hashtag finds women informing men about everyday harassment and insults.
8:30 Ta-Nahisi Coates weighs in. And Boston Globe columnist Joanna Weiss feels conflicted about Anonymous role but concludes: "The
fury that Anonymous has unleashed, after all, lays bare the problem with
glorifying kids who happen to be good at throwing balls — and the
problem with assuming that 'unconscious' is the same thing as 'consent.' Maybe the Steubenville case will prompt kids at high school and
college parties to think twice about what they do and how they act.
Maybe it will prompt parents and coaches to offer some sound and pointed
advice. Maybe this will mark the moment when shame starts to outweigh
glory. And maybe that’s when things will actually start to change."
8:00 p.m. CNN covering case tonight and AC leads off with it. New
evidnece put out by Ohio Attorney General today from "probable cause"
hearing in October. Quotes witness on girl "out of it" and assault on
girl in backseat with witness videotaping (this has come out before).
"Carried out" of party like in the now-famous photo. Three witnesses
testified then and cross-examined by defense attorneys--neither dispute
that sexual acts took place but only that they were consenual.
Then Gary Tuchman talked to @KYAnonymous guy. He appears on screen in
mask in front of green "Anonymous" flag with voice scrambled. He defends
putting evidence out and charging some guilty without trial. Then
student Ed Wilson goes on screen to say he had been IDed as being at
party but denies it fully. Another student, Atkins, claims two charged
students not guilty for sure.
Then on to attorneys Jeff Toobin and Mark Geragos. They are conflicted
about Anonymous actions--"admirable" but "disturbing" as Geragos puts
it. Toobin things change of venue unlikely because juvenile court, just
a judge and no jury. Also, judge could seat courtroom. Toobin says
"consent" will be key issue, of course. Geragos finally brings out the
real key: girl could have been too drunk to give real "consent." Toobin
wrongly says it may come down to "he said/she said" when in fact many
witnesses and social media comments.