CLEVELAND, Texas (AP) — As police search for a man convicted of taking part in the repeated group sexual assaults of an 11-year-old girl, divisions over the crime seem to still be lingering in the Southeast Texas community.
Prosecutors say the girl was sexually assaulted on at least five occasions in 2010.
Some in Cleveland, located about 45 miles northwest of Houston, have suggested the girl was partly responsible because of her appearance, sparking widespread condemnation. Some believe the arrests were racially motivated. All of the suspects are black, while the girl is Hispanic.
Others, however, anxiously await the capture of Eric McGowen, the person tried and convicted in the case who ran off in the middle of his trial.
McGowen was one of 20 males charged in the case.