Boys Convicted Of Assaulting 7-Year-Old Girl - Cleveland 19 News Cleveland, OH

Boys Convicted Of Assaulting 7-Year-Old Girl

CANTON, Ohio (AP) - Two more boys have been convicted of charges tied to the sexual assaults of a 7-year-old girl.

Stark County Family Court Judge John Hoffman ordered both youths, ages 10 and 12, to be evaluated.

Investigators said the two were among five boys who took turns assaulting the girl last summer, forcing her to touch them or raping her. The girl said she was victimized twice, once in a vacant home near her mother's home and another time in a broken-down car.

Charges of rape and gross sexual imposition against a 10-year-old were reduced to sexual imposition. It's the same plea deal given last month to a 9-year-old participant. Their age was the reason cited for the reduction.

A 12-year-old pleaded true, the juvenile equivalent of guilty, to rape. Some other charges against him were dropped.

"The plea deal doesn't lessen the incident. But I think it's in the best interests of both the juveniles and the victim," said Toni Schnellinger, assistant Stark County juvenile prosecutor.

The older boy could be sent to a state juvenile prison for at least a year.

"There are some services out there. We want to make sure we give them the right ones. Their age is a concern," Schnellinger said.

A trial is set for Friday for the two remaining boys, ages 13 and 15. The girl, now 8, is living with foster parents.

(Copyright 2002 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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