Judge: 4 Bixby Football Players To Stand Trial For Raping Teammate
TULSA COUNTY, Oklahoma - A judge ordered four Bixby football players to stand trial for the rape of a teammate.
The judge made the ruling late Tuesday afternoon after a preliminary hearing that lasted all day.
The victim took the stand Tuesday and was questioned about whether what happened was an assault or a prank gone too far.
The victim testified several other players assaulted him with a pool cue. He said he was blocked inside a room, tackled on his back, and held down with his legs up while a pool cue was forced through his shorts and underwear, actually going inside his backside.
Samuel Lakin, 17; Joe Wood, 16; William Thomas, 17; and Colton Cable, 17, are charged with one count of rape by instrumentation. They were in court at the courthouse for Tuesday's preliminary hearing.
All four suspects are charged as youthful offenders, but the judge will rule on Wednesday, July 25, 2018 on whether they will be tried as youthful offenders or as adults.
The incident happened at a team function in September 2017 at the home of the then superintendent of Bixby schools.
Attorneys for the accused argued Tuesday that what happened wasn’t a sexual assault, but a prank that got out of hand. The victim testified Tuesday he didn’t believe it was sexual.
Sexual intent is significant for the charges because if it’s determined it wasn’t sexual, that could lead to lesser charges and a move into juvenile court.
The judge ruled, however, that there was sufficient support for a charge of rape by instrumentation to proceed to trial.
Defense attorney Clark Brewster says, "pretty much whenever you have a preliminary hearing, it's very rare for a defendant to not be bound over. As you know, many times people are acquitted, charges are dropped, and that's the conclusion in this case we expect."
The boys' coach and a friend not in the room testified the victim acted normal immediately after the assault and in the days after.
The defense plans to attack the victim's credibility as this case goes forward.