Millions were horrified when Anonymous released a new video of former Steubenville High School football player Michael Nodianos joking about the alleged raped of an unidentified 16-year-old, but will he face any sort of punishment for his comments?
It's unclear at this time what, if any, punishment Michael Nodianos has faced from Ohio State University as a result of the comments he made on a now-leaked video about a rape case involving two of his former teammates from Steubenville High School. Much to the anger of those keeping an eye on the case, Ohio State has remained relatively mum on the situation, even as one of the school's students becomes a central figure in the continuing saga.
Millions were shocked last week when members of the hacktivist collective known as Anonymous released a video which showed former Steubenville High School football player Michael Nodianos joking about the alleged rape with a number of friends and teammates. Nodianos was formerly a teammate of Trent Mays and Ma'lik Richmond, the two Steubenville High School football players who currently stand accused of repeatedly raping an unidentified 16-year-old female in August 2012.
In an official statement, Ohio State University confirmed that the former Steubenville High School athlete was a student during the Fall 2012 semester, but stops short of giving any sort of definite statement on his current status.
The school says that Nodianos was only in attendance until Dec. 12, but says the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act bars the institution from further discussing Nodianos' future with Ohio State University. Many already assume that the school has no plans to punish Nodianos, who was forced to go into hiding following backlash from the leaked rape joke video, because it would only confirm that Nodianos hasn't been on campus since the final day of class.
Surprisingly, although the official press release seemed rather vague, an official for the school hopped on Twitter to confirm that Michael Nodianos would no longer be attending Ohio State University.
Michael Nodianos is no longer a student at The Ohio State University.
— OhioState (@OhioState) January 7, 2013
It's unclear if the decision was mutual, or a punishment for Nodianos' recorded comments, but many will likely be glad to hear that the former Steubenville High School football player will no longer be an Ohio State University scholarship-recipient or graduate.
In slightly more shocking news, Jefferson County Sheriff Fred Abdalla told a crowd of protesters that no further criminal charges would be filed in relation to the alleged rape of an unidentified female student last August. He also denied claims that he was involved in a cover-up, or that that local law enforcement wasn't doing enough to investigate the rape allegedly carried out by Mays, Richmond, and possibly other members of the Steubenville High football team.
"I'm not going to stand here and try to convince you that I'm not the bad guy," said Sheriff Abdalla, as the assembled protesters booed his announcement, adding " It's a disgusting video...it's stupidity. But you can't arrest somebody for being stupid."
An attorney is expected to make a public statement on Michael Nodianos' behalf this afternoon.
Update: Michael Nodianos' attorney claimed that the former Steubenville High School athlete chose to depart from Ohio State University, but did not have his academic scholarship revoked. Attorney Dennis McNamara says that Nodianos does still plan to complete his education, but is unsure what school he will attend next.
For those who have yet to see it, here's the leaked video that landed Michael Nodianos in hot water. Please be warned, the video's content is both troubling and not safe for viewing in the workplace: