Hacking probe in rape case targets Kentucky man
LOUISVILLE, Ky. – A central Kentucky man who goes by the online name KyAnonymous said Tuesday he is the target of an investigation into who hacked into an Ohio high school’s computer and posted a video related the rape of a teenage girl at an alcohol-fueled party.
Hacker activists helped propel coverage of the Steubenville rape case, in part by re-posting a 12-minute Internet video showing a former student joking about the attack and the victim, a West Virginia teenager.
Deric Lostutter, 26, told The Associated Press he posted the video on a independent website run by a booster of Steubenville High School athletics, but he said he didn’t hack into the site or any computers. He said someone else, who he wouldn’t identify, hacked into the website.
Ma’Lik Richmond, 16, was sentenced to at least a year in the state juvenile detention system. Trent Mays, 17, was sentenced to at least two years in juvenile detention after being found delinquent in the case. Mays also was convicted of photographing the underage girl naked.
Lostutter believes he could go to prison for posting the video.
“I’m facing 25 years in prison when rapists face one,” Lostutter said.
Lostutter’s attorney, Jason Flores-Williams of New Mexico, works with the Whistleblowers Defense League. He said he expected his client to be indicted in as soon as a few weeks.
“Deric is innocent and this is a waste of taxpayer dollars. We’ll be battling,” he said.
It’s not clear whether he will face any charges. Kyle Edelen, a spokesman for the U.S. attorney’s office in Lexington, declined to comment.
A special grand jury was called by Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine to investigate all aspects of the case and whether additional people should be charged.
The grand jury has only met five days since it was seated on April 15. The delays were need to interview people and analyze computers seized from Steubenville City School facilities in April.
The grand jury had been scheduled to reconvene on Monday, but that was postponed.
No date could be confirmed as to when the special grand jury will again meet.
In January, a 12-minute video on YouTube after the rape and mocked the attack was reposted on the high school’s fan website, RollRedRoll.
The FBI raided Lostutter’s home in April, seeking computer equipment, records related to RollRedRoll and a Guy Fawkes mask, he said.
The warrant is not publically available through the federal courts.
Lostutter said he worked with the online hacking group Anonymous and that a group of FBI agents, joined by two Kentucky State Troopers and an officer from the Clark County Sheriff’s Office spent three hours in his home. During that time, Lostutter said he and two others were handcuffed and not allowed to leave or shown the warrant until the search was over.
Lostutter said wasn’t told of his rights before being handcuffed.
“When I realized I wasn’t Mirandized, I was like ‘score’,” Lostutter said.
Lostutter said he has tried to settle the case with the Justice Department.
“There’s no reason why I should face more time for compromising a site by guessing a security question to reset a password … than those people who held down a drunk, underage teenager,” Lostutter said. “And, I did it in the name of good. And, I didn’t even do it.”
On Friday, visiting Judge Thomas Lipps ruled that Mays is a Tier II sex offender requiring him to report his address to the sheriff of the county where he lives every 180 days for 20 years. The judge said he will recommend Mays be sent to the Paint Creek Lighthouse Youth Center, a privately run facility for juvenile sex offenders. Lipps said the facility has a “superior” program for youth sex offenders.
Lipps said the sexual offender classification for Mays will be reviewed once Mays is released from state custody. The classification can either be made less severe or eliminated. If no action is taken at the first hearing, Mays can petition the court in three years for a reclassification. If no action was taken then, Mays would be able to file a petition every five years for a reclassification.
A hearing for Richmond was continued because of motions filed by his attorney, Walter Madison.
(Staff writer Mark Law contributed to this report.)