4 Mount Rainier High School students charged with raping teens

KOMO

SEATTLE -- Four Mount Rainier High School students were charged this week with raping two 15-year-old girls during an October school trip to Seattle.

Prosecutors says the four students, all seniors at Mt. Rainier High School in Des Moines, were attending an overnight DECA conference in Seattle in late October when they gave alcohol to two 15-year-old girls and then raped them.

Two of the students, Keegan J. Tarabochia and Donnie Ray Moore, were 18 at the time and have been charged as adults. Two others were 17 at the time and have been charged in juvenile court.

Prosecutors say Tarabochia, Moore and the other two suspects, who will not be named because of their ages, were staying at the Sheraton Hotel in Seattle in late October as part of a three-day DECA conference, which focuses on marketing, management and entrepreneurship.

On the evening of October 26, prosecutors say the four suspects invited two 15-year-old girls over to their room for a party. The girls, who are also Mount Rainier High School students, were acquainted with the suspects but didn't socialize with them, according to prosecutors.

When they arrived at the boys' room at about 11:15 p.m., prosecutors say the girls were given large shots of alcohol. The girls weren't sure what they drank, but they remember seeing both whiskey and vodka in the room.

Both girls said they had a drink and then felt "totally out of it." The girls said they were having a hard time standing up, so the suspects told them to lie down on the bed, according to prosecutors.

One of the girls said she fell asleep, and when she woke up one of the suspects was kissing her. She told him to stop and fell asleep again, only to wake up again when another boy put his hands down her pants, according to court documents. She again told the boy to stop, but he continued.

While she was being molested by one of the suspects, the girl said another suspect pulled off her pants and carried her to another bed in the room.

The girl later told police that she was "half asleep" the entire time, but that all four boys raped her. The girl said she had never had sex prior to that night.

The second girl also said she fell asleep on a bed and woke up to one of the suspects kissing her. She said the boy told her to take her pants off, which she did. She said she was "in denial but went along with (the suspect) and did not say anything," according to court documents.

The girl said she only remembers "bits and pieces" of the night, but recalled that one of the other suspects had sex with her as the night progressed.

The girl later told police she didn't know what to do and "felt like she had to go along with the boys because they were older and she believed that they would have sex with her even if she said no," according to charging papers.

The girls returned to school the following day and told several people about what happened. Both girls later went to Highline Hospital, where they were given rape kits.

During interviews with school staff, the four suspects gave conflicting reports of the evening. One suspect said he had consensual sex with one of the girls. Another suspect initially denied having sex with either girl, but later said he had consensual sex with one girl. Another suspect claimed everyone participated in the sex, according to prosecutors.

All four students declined to be interviewed by police and three of them immediately hired lawyers.

Catherine Carbone Rogers with the Highline School District said the district takes the allegations very seriously.

"We want parents to know that our student safety is of the utmost importance to us. So when we learned of these allegations, we did take action to ensure that the safety of all of our students was taken care of at Mount Rainier," she said.

The suspects were charged with third degree rape and supplying alcohol to minors. All four suspects are scheduled to be arraigned on February 24.

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