Up to 20 Present for Homecoming Gang Rape
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Up to twenty people participated in or stood witness to the gang rape of a 15-year old girl at a Homecoming dance in Richmond California.
The assault, which lasted more than two hours, took place in a dimly-lit back alley of Richmond High School with up to ten participated and ten watching the crime take place without calling police. From CNN:
Two teenage suspects have been jailed, but more arrests, as many as 20 total, are expected, according to a police detective.
"We will be making arrests continually as we develop probable cause," said Richmond Police Lt. Mark Gagan. "With this number of people implicated in the incident we're going to be making arrests on an ongoing basis."
A 1999 California law makes it illegal not to report a witnessed crime against a child, but the law applies only to children 14 and under.
"We do not have the ability to arrest people who witnessed the crime and did nothing," Gagan said. "The law can be very rigid. We don't have the authority to make an arrest."
Nineteen-year-old Manuel Ortega, described as a former student at the school, was arrested soon after he fled the scene and will face charges of rape, robbery and kidnapping, police said.
A 15-year-old was later arrested and charged with one count of felony sexual assault. A third teenager was being interviewed, Gagan said.
"Based on witness statements and suspect statements, and also physical evidence, we know that she was raped by at least four suspects committing multiple sex acts," Gagan said.
"As people announced over time that this was going on, more people came to see, and some actually participated," Gagan said.