Two arrested, charged with battery in Clinton Prairie case

CLINTON COUNTY, Ind. (WLFI) – Two people have been arrested in connection to a case of alleged sexual battery inside Clinton Prairie High School.

Kyle Johnson, 19, and Austin Martin, 18, were arrested Monday after an investigation that started in April.

Clinton County Prosecutor Anthony Sommer said Johnson and Martin have their initial hearings in Clinton Superior Court Tuesday afternoon. Both men face three counts of criminal confinement and three counts of battery.

Sommer said the victim in this case did not report the incidents. Sommer said several students who were witnesses saw the incident on the social media sites Instagram and Snapchat. Those students then reported the incident to school officials.

In April, Clinton Prairie School Corporation Superintendent Chris Sampson said two students were disciplined after allegedly tickling another student in the locker room. Sampson said the school found no evidence of inappropriate touching.

Initially, Sgt. Kim Riley said the department began investigating the incident as a sexual battery case last month.

Attorneys representing the two men said from what their clients have told them this was not sexual battery.

“Initially there were overtones of a sexual nature to the complaint because witnesses had recounted that there was taunting that accompanied these batteries in the confinement,” Sommer said. “It was a taunt that was threatening to insert a finger in the victim’s anus.”

“I’ve talked to Kyle as to what happened very briefly and I would think that to a layman’s term that his version would be that this was horseplay,” said Johnson’s attorney Steve Knecht.

“Bullying is a hot topic nowadays, and so everyone wants to know what’s going on. Do I think it rises to that? No, and I think hopefully the evidence will show that,” said Martin’s attorney Brian Dekker.

According to Clinton Prairie School Corporation’s website, Martin is a scholar athlete. Both men played football for the high school and Martin was the captain of the basketball team.

Both men have posted a $500 bond to get out of jail.

Johnson and Martin could face six months to three years behind bars for a confinement charge with an advisory sentence of one and a half years behind bars. A battery charge carries a sentence of 0-180 days in jail. Johnson and Martin face three charges in each offense.

In addition, a preliminary not guilty plea was entered on behalf of Johnson and Martin Tuesday. The trial date for both men has been set for Sept. 9, 2014.

 

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