High school student accused of rape | VailDaily.com

High school student accused of rape

Veronica Whitney

AVON – Police have arrested a Battle Mountain High School senior for allegedly raping two other students, said Avon Police Chief Jeff Layman.Avon police arrested the 17-year-old student who lives in Wildridge on Thursday following an investigation, Layman said.The student, whose identity has been withheld because he is a juvenile, was arrested under suspicion of two counts of first degree sexual assault. On Thursday, he was taken to the Eagle County jail and then to a juvenile detention facility near Denver. He’s being held without bail until his arraignment Wednesday, Layman said. Prosecutors are still deciding whether to file charges against the boy.”We recommended to the judge to hold him without bail because we were concerned that he was still out in our community,” Layman said.Although one of the alleged rapes took place in October, police first became suspicious three weeks ago following a fight in the school between the suspect and the alleged victim’s boyfriend.”In explaining his actions, (the alleged victim’s boyfriend) told an Eagle County Sheriff employee about his girlfriend being raped by this guy,” Layman said.Avon Police Det. Mike Leake then interviewed the 16-year-old girl, who also is a Battle Mountain High School student. She told police she was attacked and sexually assaulted by the other student in October when she was at a small party at a private home in Wildridge, but didn’t report it at the time, Layman said.In the course of the investigation police learned there might be a second victim, Layman said.”(The second alleged victim) told us she had been raped at a private residence in Eagle-Vail by the same guy,” Layman said.”We’re concerned there could be more victims out there,” he added. “And if so, we’d like them to come forward and let us know what happened.”But rape it’s not a commonly reported crime, Layman said.”Unfortunately we know from research and experience that sexual assault is one of the most under-reported crimes,” he added.Although a juvenile, the student could be charged as an adult, District Attorney Mark Hurlbert said.”When making that decision, we try to look if it’s a heinous crime,” Hurlbert said.If the boy is charged and convicted as a juvenile, he could face up to two years in the Department of Youth Corrections. If convicted as an adult, he could get life in prison, Hurlbert said.Staff Writer Veronica Whitney can be reached at 949-0555, ext. 454, or vwhitney@vaildaily.com. Vail, Colorado

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