Report: Cracks develop in case against Marines accused of gang rape
NEW ORLEANS - A court hearing Wednesday has revealed that there may be more to a high-profile rape case than first thought.
Earlier this year, four men were arrested in connection with the gang rape of a Tulane University student in New Orleans. According to reports, the men, three of whom are Marines based out of Algiers, were accused of sexually assaulting the student and her friend after a night out in New Orleans back in April.
Alexander Davenport, Matthew Farrell, Antonio Landrum and Jared Anderson all face rape charges over the encounter. All four were arrested in late April.
The assaults allegedly happened after Landrum helped the women get home and was joined there by Davenport, Anderson and Farrell.
However, new evidence presented in court Wednesday shows possible cracks in the story of what happened that night. According to WWL, a detective was able to obtain text messages sent from the victim's phone on the night of the alleged assault. Those messages included one sent to the victim's roommate, who was concerned after she heard a commotion next door.
The message, sent while the victim was apparently having group sex, said, "everything's fine."
That information was revealed during the preliminary hearing at Orleans Parish Criminal District Court, in which defense attorneys for three of the suspects sought to show inaccuracies in the NOPD’s investigation.
Detective Anya Coleman said the suspects “took turns having sex” with two “highly intoxicated” victims and that as many as 15 used condoms were found on the scene after the alleged gang rape on April 15 at a home in the 5100 block of South Claiborne Avenue.
That same detective later said during a cross-examination that there was consensual and non-consensual between the alleged victims and the suspects.
In addition to the text from one of the alleged victims to her concerned roommate, Coleman says one of them also went to a coffee shop with the suspects after the alleged gang rape and even held hands with one of them.
Finally, Detective Coleman testified that one of the women had refused a rape test, as well as a toxicology test. She also says a toxicology test for the second victim was destroyed.
All three Marines reported the incident to their superiors after one of the alleged victims said she was going to the police, according to the report from WWL.