COLUMBUS: Police officers and investigators on Thursday were searching the high school attended by two football players who raped a 16-year-old girl after an alcohol-fueled party last summer, Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine said.
Search warrants also were executed at Vestige Ltd., a digital evidence company in Medina, in addition to Steubenville High School and the offices of the Steubenville school board, DeWine said. The search warrants are part of an attempt to learn whether other laws were broken in connection with the rape.
“What I hope people will believe when we’re done is that we did everything we could to find the truth and that justice was done,” DeWine said. “What you’re seeing today is just part of that effort.”
Police officers and investigators began serving the warrants about 2 p.m., were still on site a couple of hours later and could work into the night, DeWine said. There was no immediate word on what the searches turned up.
The searches come as a 14-person grand jury prepares to hear from witnesses in Steubenville on Tuesday, two weeks after the panel was seated.
Judges sealed investigators’ requests for the search warrants at the request of the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation on the grounds that disclosing them “would be detrimental to the ongoing criminal investigation,” according to the judges’ orders.
Phone and email messages left Thursday for Steubenville schools Superintendent Michael McVey weren’t immediately returned.
A chief issue before the grand jury is whether adults, especially any in supervisory positions over children, knew about the rape but failed to report it as required by state law.
Vestige spokesman Greg Kelley said in an email that the company’s policy “is not to comment on any matter that may be entrusted to us.”
The company’s website says its goal is helping clients “make educated and informed decisions about their approach and application regarding electronic evidence.”