Alleged rape at Maryland high school spurs immigration debate

Posted at 2:36 PM, Mar 21, 2017
and last updated 2017-03-21 14:37:14-04

(WJLA, CNN NEWSOURCE) The alleged in-school rape last Thursday has left some Rockville High parents in turmoil.

"Angry, scared, in disbelief, upset, wondering how this could have happened,” said parent Vicky Chon.

The arrest of 18 and 17-year-old freshmen, both recent immigrants, one confirmed to be undocumented, has some raising questions about the county's welcoming policy towards immigrants.

"The whole thing was unconscionable in about every way you can possibly imagine. These 17 and 18-year-olds are not even just, just regular 17 and 18-year-olds. These are illegal aliens,” Ed Amatetti said.

But others say it is wrong to link status and the crime.

Gustavo Torres is head of Casa de Maryland. "Undocumented status has nothing to do with this, they are committing a horrendous crimes and they need to pay for what they did."

And near Rockville High we met former teacher Joe Beatty. "I had great success teaching Hispanic boys who were undocumented. "That's what America is about, I'm and immigrant, you're an immigrant."

Both teens are charged with first-degree rape. They face possible life sentences.

The older teen is being charged as an adult.