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Teacher-coach in Steubenville rape case gets community service

STEUBENVILLE, Ohio – A teacher and coach accused of trying to thwart an investigation into the rape of a 16-year-old girl in eastern Ohio will have the charge dismissed in exchange for community service at a domestic violence shelter, Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine announced Friday.

Seth Fluharty was charged last year with a single misdemeanor count of failure to report child abuse or neglect involving the rape of the girl by two Steubenville High School football players in 2012.

The charge will be dismissed once Fluharty completes 20 community service hours at a domestic violence shelter and attends anti-sexual violence training at Steubenville city schools, DeWine said.

“This resolution acknowledges how very important it is to report child abuse and neglect,” DeWine said in a statement.

Fluharty, an elementary school principal and conditioning coach for wrestlers, entered a not guilty plea to the charge last year. His attorney declined to comment Friday.

Fluharty was one of six people charged last year by a grand jury investigating whether other laws were broken in the case of a West Virginia girl who was raped after an alcohol-fueled house party in August 2012.

Three of those cases have now been resolved.

In February, a former school worker pleaded guilty to stealing computer equipment in a case that arose from the grand jury investigation but wasn’t related to the girl’s rape.

In January, DeWine announced charges would be dropped against a Steubenville elementary school principal official in exchange for community service related to rape awareness. The principal was accused of failing to report rumors of a teenage sex and drinking party in April 2012 unrelated to the later rape.

Among the remaining defendants is Steubenville superintendent Mike McVey, who has pleaded not guilty to charges including obstructing justice and tampering with evidence and a misdemeanor charge alleging he made a false statement in April 2012.

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