Posted on | January 14, 2013 | 12 Comments
“Families of Big Red athletes have reported being harassed and threatened. . . . Police increased patrols around city schools after a threat of violence triggered a lockdown.
“[Local parent Jackie] Sacripanti said children in the community who had nothing to do with the parties or the alleged rape ‘are being taunted and harassed, just because they attend Steubenville City Schools.’”
– Linda Harris, “Standing up for Steubenville: Rally supports scandal-shocked residents,” Steubenville (Ohio) Herald-Star
What happened the night of Saturday, Aug. 11? We can’t yet say we know “beyond a reasonable doubt,” but Lee Stranahan, who visited Steubenville last week and has examined testimony in a preliminary hearing, is beginning to express entirely reasonable doubts about how the media have covered the accusations of rape against two football players — and insinuations against many others in the community.
An attorney for one of the two accused football players is seeking to have the trial moved out of Steubenville:
Attorney Walter Madison . . . says the case has gone “out of control” amid extensive online and media attention.
The case has gained international attention through the work of bloggers and hacker-activists who allege that other football players should be charged in the August incident but have been protected through a cover-up.
The involvement of “bloggers and hacker-activists” in this case has been problematic, as Lee Stranahan documents extensively:
- Commander X – The Fugitive Who Is Attacking Steubenville – And His Sinister Motives
- Why Is @KYAnonymous Lying About How He Learned About Steubenville?
- Alexandria Goddard’s End-Run Used To Smear Steubenville Students
- How Goddard Promotes Things She Knows Are Lies
Alexandria Goddard’s role in this story is an object of particular scrutiny by Stranahan. The former Steubenville resident is being hailed as a heroine by some in the media, who are treating ”facts” she has “reported” as if they were . . . well, factual reporting.
This has fostered suspicions of a conspiratorial cover-up by law enforcement, suspicions which may be wholly unwarranted because, in case it has previously escaped your notice, the two suspects are innocent until proven guilty in a court of law, and there has not yet been a trial.
Nevertheless, the national media have jumped to conclusions faster than you can say “Duke lacrosse team.” Not only has the accusation of rape been assumed as a proven fact, but the shadow of guilty complicity has been cast over the entire city of Steubenville. When the truth is finally known, the media’s credibility is not likely to be enhanced, but who can the innocent people of Steubenville sue to get their reputations back?