Prosecutors Confirm Dropping Case Against Immigrant Teens Facing Rape Charges In Maryland
Earlier this year, a case in Maryland gained international attention after two immigrant teenagers faced charges because they allegedly raped a 14-year-old female classmate. Prosecutors, however, said in a recent statement they planned to drop the case altogether.
Maryland State Attorney John McCarthy said at a news conference they decided to drop the charges after a thorough investigation. McCarthy noted the testimonies of the girl had several substantial inconsistencies, Salon reported. He noted, "Due to lack of corroboration and substantial inconsistencies from the facts, the original charges cannot be sustained and prosecution of those charges is untenable."
The defense team noted that the immigrants, 17-year-old Jose Montano and 18-year-old Henry Sanchez Milian, proved the sex was consensual. The teens, one from El Salvador and the other from Guatemala, proved the encounter being agreeable amongst the parties through explicit text message exchanges and security camera showing the female teen, who willingly entered the restroom despite the claims she resisted. The defense team said Montano and the girl exchanged messages a day before and planned to have intercourse in school.
The girl originally told investigators she knew Montano and they talked during that morning. Montano then asked if she wanted to have sex but she declined. She said Montano then forced her into a boys' bathroom. She added both Montano and Milian took turns raping her as she cried and asked them to stop. The incident took place at the Rockville High School on March 16.
Even though the two immigrant teens are off the hook from the rape charges, prosecutors said they will pursue cases regarding child pornography. They found pornographic images on the cellphones of the teens. Accordingly, the girl willingly shared these images to one of the teens then passed it to the other accused.
Initially, prosecutors wanted to pursue a statutory rape charge. Under the law, the victim must be 14-years-old and the suspects must be four years older at the time of the incident. Although Milian is 18, he's not fully four years older than the female teenager, The Washington Post revealed.
The case catapulted to the spotlight after reports confirmed the two teens came to the country illegally just months before the supposed crime. They both got stopped at the border and then got detained. Later, both lived with their relatives and enrolled at Rockville High School as ninth graders.