A Fairfax judge has dismissed an abduction charge against a 19-year-old Alexandria man arrested in connection with the rape of a 15-year-old girl during a high school football game last October.
The charge was dismissed during a closed preliminary hearing Monday in Fairfax Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court by Judge Michael J. Valentine.
Jeffrey Lewis, a construction worker, had been charged with abduction with intent to defile. Two juveniles, a 14-year-old and a 17-year-old, are charged with raping the girl. Their trial is scheduled to begin Monday.
Of the witnesses at the hearing -- the victim, a friend of hers and two juvenile boys -- none testified that Lewis forced the girl into the girls' bathroom at Fort Hunt High School, where the rape took place. The victim and the two boys did testify that Lewis was in the bathroom during the attack.
Much of the testimony of the two juvenile boys surprised assistant prosecutor Corinne Magee, she said yesterday. "Anytime anything dealt with Lewis, they said, " 'I couldn't tell' " or " 'I can't remember,' " she said.
The defense called no witnesses during the hearing, which was to determine whether there was sufficient evidence to seek an indictment against Lewis.
According to both Magee and Janell Buell, Lewis' attorney, testimony at the hearing recounted the events of the Oct. 3 incident during a junior varsity football game between Fort Hunt and Alexandria's T. C. Williams in this way:
The 15-year-old Fort Hunt High School sophomore was carried into the girls' bathroom over the shoulder of a boy. A group of six to eight males, including Lewis, followed them into the bathroom.
The victim testified, according to Buell and Magee, that she was pushed up against a wall in the bathroom and fondled by several persons, whom she could not identify. Then she was taken into a stall, where Lewis was present, and raped twice, they said she testified.
None of the four witnesses testified that Lewis had anything to do with getting the victim into the bathroom, according to the attorneys.
Magee said yesterday that the case against the two juveniles charged with rape relies heavily on the same two witnesses whose testimony surprised her at Monday's hearing. That trial also will be closed because the victim in the case is a juvenile.
The victim also testified, according to Magee and Buell, that moments before she was carried bodily into the girls' bathroom and assaulted, she went into the boys' bathroom with Lewis.
She testified that Lewis propositioned her, they said, and she said, " 'Leave me alone, or I'll scream,' " at which point Lewis left her alone.
The incident initially drew public attention and outrage because of the number of spectators who apparently stood by and watched the attack; because of initial, inaccurate police reports that some of those spectators cheered the attack on, and because police did not disclose the incident for five days, releasing information about it only after media inquiries.
Fairfax prosecutor Robert F. Horan Jr. said no charges could be brought against those juvenile boys who merely stood by.