COLUMBUS (AP) — The chief justice of the Ohio Supreme Court has appointed a special judge to oversee the work of a grand jury investigating possible new charges related to the rape of a 16-year-old girl last summer.
Today’s appointment follows a request by Judge Frank Bruzzese of Jefferson County Common Pleas Court for an outside judge because of ongoing local controversy about an alleged cover-up of the initial rape report.
Judge Bruzzese says “nameless bloggers” who made unproven allegations of a cover-up have a strong following that makes appointing a judge from outside Steubenville necessary.
Chief Justice Maureen O’Connor responded by appointing retired Summit County Judge Patricia Ann Cosgrove to handle the grand jury, which meets in April.
Two football players were convicted Sunday of raping the girl after an alcohol-fueled party in August.