Charges Dropped; Investigation Into East High Rape Continues

Charges Dropped; Investigation Into East High Rape Continues

Two students could still face disciplinary action after Shelby County Sheriff's investigators spent more than week investigating a student's claim she was raped at East High School.
Memphis, TN -- Two students could still face disciplinary action after Shelby County Sheriff's investigators spent more than week investigating a student's claim she was raped at East High School.

On Thursday, investigators dropped a rape charge against a 16-year-old, saying they didn't have enough evidence to move forward. Last Wednesday, an 18-year-old special needs student reported she had been raped during sixth period.

"During this investigation detectives reviewed documents relevant to the case, school video, and forensic evidence. After doing so the Shelby County Attorney General's Office was advised of the investigation and developments," Sgt. Michael Keaton said Thursday.

"The Shelby County District Attorney General's review of the Shelby County Sheriff's investigation determined there is insufficient evidence to sustain forcible rape charges against the defendant at this time," he added.

"The whole ball of wax was that we found out that she was lying," said Sam Perkins, a lawyer who represented the 16-year-old.

According to Perkins, his client initially lied to investigators by claiming he didn't have sex with the 18-year-old.

"He did not help himself at all," said Perkins."Him saying nothing happened, and she saying something did happen, they have to travel that road, as opposed to let's check both of them."

Perkins says after his client started telling the truth the tone of the investigation changed.

"I chewed on him real good, I took him behind the woodshed," he said.

Reached by phone Thursday evening, the mother of the 18-year-old said all of this was news to her. She said despite the dropped charges she would continue to stand by her daughter.

Perkins hopes his client learns his lesson.

"My thing to him was you need to be thankful, now you have an idea what it's like to be locked up for something, so you better take this opportunity to stay out of trouble," he said.

Both students could still face trouble from the school district.

"The district is reviewing this matter," a school spokeswoman said.
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