Special Prosecutor to Review Maryille Sex Crime Case

Special Prosecutor to Review Maryille Sex Crime Case

Robert Rice announced that a special prosecutor will be appointed to look at the case.
(MARYVILLE, Mo.) The Nodaway County prosecutor is speaking out about a sexual assault case that has grabbed national attention.

Robert Rice announced that he will ask a judge to appoint a special prosecutor to look at the case.

"I've asked the court to appoint a special prosecuting attorney to conduct an independent review of the facts and determine whether to refile charges," Rice said in a heavily attended news conference Tuesday afternoon in front of the Nodaway County Courthouse.

His decision follows a public outcry for justice after a recent story in the Kansas City Star fueled outrage across the nation.

The Star's investigation looked at the handling of the case involving 14-year-old Daisy Coleman, who said she was sexually assaulted while intoxicated along with another friend at a party last year.

Two boys were originally charged in the case, but the charges were dropped after Rice said the alleged victims refused to cooperate.
That's a claim they have since denied.

Rice says his decision for a special prosecutor is based on a Tuesday CNN interview with the two victims and their mothers. During that interview both families said they wanted to cooperate with authorities. Rice said that announcement took him by surprise.

"Until that time, they had never told me they had changed their mind."

There is still disagreement as to whether the victims invoked their 5th Amendment rights not to self incriminate. While the two families say they were always cooperative with the investigation, Rice says he has proof this was not the case.  Rice says he was "careful and deliberate" during a deposition with the victims and their families in explaining that by taking their 5th Amendment rights, they needed to understand that the case against the teens charged would be dismissed. However, Rice added that documentation of that deposition is included in files sealed by the court when the case was dismissed.

"I'm standing in front of you today honestly wishing I could hand each and every one of you the documents I just discussed," Rice said. "Because then, it would absolutely shut this line of questioning."

Rice said his integrity has been questioned along with the integrity of the entire judicial system when it was suggested the charges were dropped to due connections with the families of those charged.

"That's absolutely crap," said Rice. "I'm just going to be honest with you. My name was dragged through the mud in that article and I don't appreciate it. The assertion was made based off of rumor and I don't care one bit. I spent my entire life trying to work as hard as I can to do the right thing all the time and someone can throw out a couple of baseless rumors that makes everybody think that I'm a crook, I'm telling you what, that makes me mad. It's not true, never was true."

Nodaway County Judge Glen Dietrich will appoint the special prosecutor to the case.
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