Two teens who were arrested for allegedly raping a 14-year-old girl at their high school had recently arrived from Central America, reports suggest.
Police in Maryland arrested Jose Montano, 17, and Henry Sanchez, 18, after the young girl told school officials the pair had forced her into a bathroom stall and raped her.
Sanchez is now facing deportation proceedings as he had a pending ‘alien removal’ case against him, according to the Washington Post.
He is believed to have entered the US illegally from Guatemala seven months ago.
Immigration and Customs Enforcement won’t report on Montano’s immigration status as he is a minor.
Montano arrived El Salvador about eight months ago.
Sanchez was held without bond in court on Friday. Montgomery County Assistant States Attorney Rebecca MacVittie called him a ‘substantial flight risk’.
Montgomery County Police announced the arrests on Friday, saying that the alleged assault happened the day before at Rockville High School.
According to investigators, the victim was walking in a school hallway at around 9am when she ran into the two teens.
Montano asked the freshman to walk with them and to have sex, but the girl turned them down, according to a press release from the Montgomery County Police Department.
The 17-year-old boy repeated his request, then forced her into a boys’ bathroom and into a stall, where he and Sanchez proceeded to rape her.
They reportedly took turns holding her down while repeatedly assaulting her and she cried out, and was eventually able to escape the bathroom.
The teenage girl later reported the alleged attack to school officials, who immediately called the authorities.
Despite their age, both the boys were placed in the ninth grade.
Investigators with the Special Victims Division arrested Montano and Sanchez on campus that same day on charges of first-degree rape and two counts of first-degree sexual offense.
Montano is charged as an adult, but police have not released his booking photo.
On Friday, Rockville High School sent a letter to parents addressing the incident and the arrests, according to WUSA.
‘Ensuring a safe, secure and welcoming learning environment for all of our students is our top priority. Our staff remains vigilant in the monitoring of our school each and every day,’ the note said in part.
Gboyinde Onijala, a spokeswoman for the Montgomery County Public Schools, said that staff at Rockville High will increase monitoring of the hallways and bathrooms. The school has one school resource officer.