October 17, 2013 in Nation/World

Online photos examined in connection with Ohio U. rape report

Associated Press
 

ATHENS, Ohio – Onlookers may have thought they were seeing consensual public sex when they took photos of a couple and posted them on social media sites, but investigators are now examining the images in connection with a rape report, a police chief said.

Sharing such images may seem despicable, but the photos are helping police in their investigation, the chief said.

On Sunday evening, the female Ohio University student reported “unconsenting sexual conduct” with a man between 1 a.m. and 6 a.m. that day on a street near the university’s campus, about 70 miles southeast of Columbus, according to an Athens police report.

Athens Police Chief Tom Pyle told the Athens News that the witnesses may not have understood what they were seeing.

“It may have looked consensual to them,” he said.

The photos show the couple against a bank window. Pyle said the images and a video posted that night are essential to the investigation.

“While it certainly to the lay person would appear to be despicable that they’re posting this information, it also assisted us in our investigation,” Pyle said. “So a real double-edged sword.”

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