Steubenville rape case: District employee charged with obstruction, perjury


William Rhinaman was jailed Monday without bond after being indicted in connection with the Steubenville rape case.
(Photo/Jefferson County Sheriff’s Dept.)


by Graham Winch,

(CNN) — An Ohio school district employee pleaded not guilty to multiple charges Wednesday in connection with the 2012 rape of a 16-year-old girl that made national headlines.

William Rhinaman, 53, the director of technology for Steubenville City Schools, was charged with tampering with evidence, obstruction of justice, obstructing official business and perjury in the high-profile rape case that rocked the small Ohio town last year.

Rhinaman is expect to be released on $25,000 bond. A pre-trial hearing is scheduled for October 25.

Rhinaman’s attorney had no comment to CNN as Rhinaman left the Jefferson County Courthouse.

In March, Steubenville High School football players Ma’lik Richmond and Trenton Mays were convicted of the rape, which took place at a party in August 2012. Photos and videos of the incident made their way onto social media and attracted national attention.

Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine told HLN earlier this the week that a grand jury is still working on the case and may hand down additional indictments.

“This is the first indictment in an ongoing grand jury investigation,” DeWine said. “Our goal remains to uncover the truth, and our investigation continues.”

DeWine declined to comment on what evidence Rhinaman is accused of tampering with.

“I’m very limited in what I can say, because this is the product of an investigation by the grand jury. As you know, in Ohio and most states grand jury proceedings are secret,” DeWine said. “I can’t really talk about it, but he is the director of technology at the school. He is an employee of the school. And what I’ve said is that, in fact, what he did, did occur as a result of that employment.”

If convicted, Rhinaman could be sentenced to four years in prison, which is longer than the two boys convicted of rape will serve.

Richmond was sentenced to a minimum of one year in a juvenile correctional facility. Mays got two years.
CNN’s Ross Levitt contributed to this report.


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