Teen ‘scared’ learning alleged rapist played in Youngstown basketball game

As the East High School student accused of rape sat in the Juvenile Justice Center, his alleged victim spoke out, saying she felt unsafe after learning that he was playing in a Junior Varsity basketball game despite the terms of his house arrest.

The girl, whose identity we’re concealing, said she doesn’t want to get out of bed most days after she was raped by the 16-year-old boy. 

“I still don’t. This has really impacted me and my family,” she said. 

The 15-year-old girl says the assault happened last October — just days after her birthday — while she, the suspect and others were working at the Canfield Fairgrounds.

She said it all began when the suspect started kissing her.

“He wanted me to take my clothes off, and I didn’t want to do that, and he started putting his hands up my skirt and stuff,” she said. 

She said she tried to get away, but the suspect didn’t stop.

“I said, ‘No,’ and then he just kept, and I just froze from there,” she said. 

Afterward, she didn’t tell anyone until her mother arrived to take her home.

“I told my mom right away what had happened,” she said. 

The girl’s mother said her daughter teared up and told her, “Mommy, you’re gonna be so upset.”

The mother said after hearing her daughter identify her attacker, she was infuriated. 

“I would let him sit in my car when it was cold and rainy, and I’m thinking, ‘How dare you?'” she said. 

The mother said this was her daughter’s first job, and the feelings of happiness for her only child turned to guilt.

The girl said she couldn’t bring herself to get medical attention for several days but eventually went to Akron Children’s Hospital.

Then came insult to injury.

“I got a call from one of the ladies at Akron Children’s and they said that he gave me gonorrhea,” she said. 

Although the young suspect was arrested in December, the family’s nightmare resurfaced again this week after they learned that he was out free and playing a basketball game at Ursuline High School. 

“My husband actually saw channel 27’s story and he said, ‘Honey, have you seen the news story?'” the mother recalled. 

The photo provided to WKBN showed the suspect wearing a monitoring bracelet on his ankle.

“I was really scared. I started shaking. I couldn’t believe that he was out playing at a basketball game, ’cause all I was thinking was ‘What if I went to that game?'” the alleged victim said. 

“I wanna know how the Hell a kid with an ankle bracelet is allowed to be there on the court,” the mother added. 

The suspect was arrested once investigators learned that he violated the terms of his house arrest.

Still, the family is upset. 

“Because they let me down. They gave us a false sense of security,” the mother said.

The suspect’s lawyer, Attorney John Shultz, said although the boy made a mistake by not asking for the court’s permission to play with the team, he plans to file papers seeking his release again.

He said the boy has never been in violation of the house arrest contract before and has always been cooperative. He said the teen may have assumed that it was a “school-related” event, so he would be allowed to attend. 

The conditions of his house arrest were that he only go to school and home each day unless he had specific, prior approval to go anywhere else. 

The JJC’s court administrator said the ankle bracelet went off Tuesday night as it was supposed to, and the boy’s probation officer went to the magistrate the next day to have the warrant issued for his arrest. 

Youngstown City School spokesperson Denise Dick insisted that administrators had no idea that the student had any restrictions and that no one had ever warned them that he was not supposed to be there.

The alleged victim said she wants the public to be aware of what has happened.

“I don’t want him to be able to do this to another girl in the future,” she said. 

In the meantime, the girl’s parents said this ordeal has cost them something that they can never replace.

“Our innocence is lost because never did I think my daughter was going to be raped,” the mother said. “You really do think that happens to someone else.” 

For now, the young suspect is set for trial on March 25 on the rape charge. 

Editor’s note: WKBN generally does not identify suspects who are under 18 unless they are charged as an adult. The identity of the girl and her mother have also been concealed at their request. 

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