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Pittsburgh Tribune Review

A Steubenville High School wrestling coach will perform community service and attend training on the problem of sexual violence as part of a plea deal after he was indicted for failing to report child abuse or neglect.

A grand jury in November indicted Seth Fluharty and four other school officials in the fallout from the Steubenville High rape case, in which two football stars raped a semi-conscious teenage girl in 2012.

Fluharty must serve 20 community service hours at the ALIVE shelter or another approved facility in the Steubenville area. He must attend a training session for Steubenville City Schools provided by the Ohio Alliance to End Sexual Violence, state Attorney General Mike DeWine announced on Friday.

If Fluharty completes the terms of the agreement, misdemeanor charges against him will be dismissed, DeWine said.

The Steubenville school board in November suspended Fluharty, Superintendent Michael McVey, Pugilese West Elementary School Principal Lynnett Gorman, volunteer assistant football coach Matthew Belardine and technology director William Rhinaman after they were indicted.

The board issued a statement on Friday saying Gorman and Fluharty returned to their positions in December. McVey is on paid administrative leave. Belardine and Rhinaman no longer work in the district, board officials said.

Belardine and Rhinaman have court appearances scheduled for April 22.

A juvenile court judge in March 2013 found Trent Mays, 18, and Malik Richmond, 17, delinquent on rape charges, the equivalent of a guilty verdict in adult court.

The victim, who was 16 at the time and who lives across the Ohio River in Weirton, W.Va., was highly intoxicated and did not remember the boys assaulting her "" once in the back of a car while a friend recorded video and once on the floor of a basement while other teens watched and took photos that they sent by text message to one another.

The case grabbed national headlines when the "hacktivist" group Anonymous published leaked and hacked evidence on the case, including a photo of the suspects carrying the girl by her ankles and wrists and a 12-minute video of a teen crudely joking about the attackers raping the girl and urinating on her.

Chris Togneri is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-380-5632 or


April 13, 2014


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