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Ohio school employee indicted for hindering rape probe

By Brendan O'Brien

(Reuters) - A school employee was arrested Monday on charges he hindered the investigation into the rape of a drunk teenage girl in Steubenville, Ohio by two high school football players who were ultimately convicted.

The case drew national attention to the town, 40 miles west of Pittsburgh, after a photo and video that appeared to document the assault of the 16-year-old girl in a drunken stupor at a party were posted online.

A grand jury indicted William Rhinaman, 53, the district's director of technology, with perjury, obstruction with justice and tampering with evidence charges. He was also indicted for obstructing official business, a misdemeanor.

Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine said in a statement Rhinaman's was the first indictment in the ongoing investigation into whether other people committed crimes by hindering the rape case.

The indictment against Rhinaman will remain sealed until Tuesday, said Dan Tierney, a spokesman for the Ohio Attorney General.

A judge in March found Trent Mays, 17, and Ma'lik Richmond, 16, two members of Steubenville's "Big Red" football team, delinquent in the sexual assault of the girl in the early morning of August 12, 2012 when witnesses said she was too drunk to move or speak.

The judge ordered Richmond held in a juvenile detention facility for at least one year and Mays at least two years. The juvenile system could hold them until age 21. Both were required to register as juvenile sex offenders.

(Reporting By Brendan O'Brien; Editing by Tim Gaynor and Cynthia Osterman)

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