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March 18th, 2013
10:17 PM ET

Lawyer for the 16-year-old Steubenville rape victim: "She has not at this point forgiven anybody"

On the heels of Sunday's verdict which found two teens guilty of raping a 16-year-old girl, tonight Piers Morgan welcomed Bob Fitzsimmons for a live interview.

Discussing the scene in the courtroom which saw one of the boys – Ma'lik Richmond – offer an apology, the attorney for the victim described the event:

"It was a very emotionally packed moment," he explained. "Watching this young boy suffer once he realized what the punishment and what had happened at that point. It was hard to watch anybody suffer, a human being like that, and I think everybody in that court room was significantly moved."

Asked about his client's response to the apology, Fitzsimmons added his first-hand insight:

"She has not at this point forgiven anybody for what she's been through, the terrible ordeal," he revealed. "This young girl has been a hero to a lot of people that she stood up but it also demonstrates what women have to go through to make these allegations. It's not easy, it's difficult, and we need more people like this young victim to stand up and report these types of bad acts."

Watch the clip, and listen to the interview, as Morgan and Fitzsimmons further discuss the case, and trial, that has polarized a community, and country.
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Filed under: The Big Story
soundoff (34 Responses)
  1. scott

    This is a opportunnity to re-affirm our grand parents morales and american values to our teenagers and young adults now! Humility, personal respect ( its earned not given), self-respect ( our kids our the ambassadors of ones family. Cherishing personal relationships not to conspire and through under the bus ( Loyalty, and truthfulness) Not to dispose a freindship, relationship, or marriage like a use kleenex. Long lern goal, goals period. Preach values again for the first time!

    March 18, 2013 at 11:25 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  2. Beatrice ouko

    Women should standup and let their voices be heard.We go through a lot.Am from Kenya.

    March 18, 2013 at 11:29 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  3. Name*frank valdez

    Intoxicated person can give consent n minors can't do it either

    March 19, 2013 at 12:18 am | Report abuse | Reply
  4. Name*frank valdez

    Intoxicated persons can't give consent

    March 19, 2013 at 12:20 am | Report abuse | Reply
  5. Name*frank valdez

    That is the law

    March 19, 2013 at 12:21 am | Report abuse | Reply
  6. Lewis Keys

    The court in my opinion made the wrong decision. A drunk in the USA have very little rights. She was said to be under aged drunk. She was herself in the process of breaking the law. If the law had worked and if the guys knew what they was doing under the influence of alcohol the the young girl should be held to the same standard. Why wasn't the girl charged with raping the boys. They was all drunk and should be equally responsible. The young girls mother blamed the parents of the boys for not knowing where their boys were when she didn't no where her girl was. If she was driving and run over someone are if she was drunk and she walks out in front of a car who would be responsible. Bad things happen to drunks and she is a drunki

    March 19, 2013 at 12:28 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • The chad

      Your right and notcie that both of the women didnt notice that women dont take responsibility for what they do. Feminism is crazy as hell women think they can do whatever they want

      March 19, 2013 at 12:52 am | Report abuse | Reply
      • John Y

        Wow! Do you realized what you said. Amazing...

        March 19, 2013 at 1:33 am | Report abuse |
    • sm

      Wow Lewis, the drunk dont have enough rights? Seems someone has burned too many brain cells! What about the parents keeping on eye on their elite football plkayers activity ,seems they except teen underage drinking. hands on parenting is a lost art anymore, But WOW Lewis! This is the dumbest thing Ive ever heard!

      March 19, 2013 at 4:34 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • Denise

      I agree with you! Her mother should have known where her daughter was! Now she is trying to tell us to find out where our kids are?? Funny, I do not need her to tell me where my kids are!! I do my job as a mother!!!

      March 19, 2013 at 5:32 pm | Report abuse | Reply
      • scott

        excellant, better stay on top of that. This isnt an insult, but when your consumed with a load of problems and bills, we lose track of our childrens motivation and stanard. Keep up the good work

        March 19, 2013 at 6:15 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Mark Kane

    Piers, I have utmost respect for the challenging questions and integritry you deliver when interviewing involved parties in relevant events. However, I was saddened by your inclusion of Malik's "Father" in the discussions. An admitted, absentee in the parenting process; an inarticulate poor excuse for an individual claiming at half past midnight to be a father. He is irrelevant to the entire situation. This must be a situation, where you found a warm body willing to go on the air and talk... regardless of the merit of their opinions ! You are above the garbage of 'daytime' dribble going just for 'ratings'.

    March 19, 2013 at 12:28 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • Mark Kane

      Piers (or someone on his staff, who might be following posts and can choose to reply). Why was Malik's "Father" given any air time at all ?

      March 19, 2013 at 10:10 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  8. Name*frank valdez


    March 19, 2013 at 12:40 am | Report abuse | Reply
  9. Edward C. Jones

    Piers, are you a trained psychotherapist or psychiatrist, or perhaps "God"—to know, for sure, as you assert—that to sob and apologize MEANS and CAN ONLY MEAN – that the INDIVIDUAL in question (Ma'lik) – MUUUUUST be guilty? As a journalist, you should know that there can always be another element that has not been revealed. There have been huge numbers of convictions that have been later overturned. You compromise journalistic integrity with such biased, emphatic, and apparently emotionally driven reactions and insistent responses to those who question what may seem like a "closed shut" conclusion? Seriously, Piers? It's not that you are necessarily wrong – you just should not approach the issue as though you are NECESSARILY right – because their is only one way to interpret what has been presented (and you know, for certain – that you have 100% of the facts). Wow!

    March 19, 2013 at 12:41 am | Report abuse | Reply
  10. KB

    I don't understand! I feel for the victim, but she was drunk. It doesn't excuse those boys behavior so why are we excusing hers. This has been a line used for way too long. " I was too drunk to know what I was doing." Every parent involved in this case should also be charged. Where were they when their children were out drinking. Every last one of those children are victims! Piers Morgan, you failed to realize that fact! The parents are the criminals.

    March 19, 2013 at 12:44 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • scott

      your delusional! Really? parenting and values start from day one with your child. Pre-school ( a head start socially). Personal involvement with your childs teachers and homework. socialising skills. morales and family values re-affired over and over again. Dont blame anyone but yourself for your childs actions. "The parents should be held responcible" All who left an unattented free for all alone with minors. Hands on parenting. Do you know what your children are doing?

      March 19, 2013 at 4:51 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • RB

      And if you ask me, YOU and your kind is to blame for US falling apart...
      Do we have to explain this to you? SHE WAS PASSED OUT!!!!!
      She didn't do anything wrong, beside being drunk!
      And how old was those boys????
      By your argument, it's ok to stick something in their ass, if they pass out at a party?
      Nice! Hope you never pass out at a party if I'm there! 🙂

      March 20, 2013 at 7:25 am | Report abuse | Reply
  11. Name*frank valdez

    The law is clear bola de pendejos

    March 19, 2013 at 12:46 am | Report abuse | Reply
  12. Edward C. Jones

    The underlying, ignored question: If there had been no (negligent) hyper level of illegal under-age binge drinking, what is the likelihood of any of this having happened? What is the logic – of applying logic to the outcome of a ridiculous situation (that is illegal – any charges invoked toward parents who allowed for unsupervised binge drinking party attendance?) – without the primary emphasis being on the situation itself? I don't believe in blaming the victim – but I don't believe, either, that all was innocent until the apparently non-consensual digital intercourse occurred with an apparently blacked-out victim. Isn't arbitrary to decide where the point is – that criminal activity occurred? Bad start, middle, & end—I think.

    March 19, 2013 at 1:11 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • Scott

      Sure Edward your the highest standard for the rest of us to follow eah? you seem to be in denial. are you a parent? hands on Edward hands on. your not a saint my friend!

      March 19, 2013 at 6:18 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  13. Beverly Fletcher

    I am really glad that someone takes a moment to ask about a girl who is 16 and has drunk herself into a stupor so that she can not protect herself. What the boys did is disgusting but is the girl any less respohsible because she chose to drink so much. If I were her mother she and I would be having a long discussion about her behavior.

    March 19, 2013 at 3:35 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • RB

      My god! You american idiots are amazing!
      THE GIRL WAS PASSED OUT! Does that give anyone the right to abuse her?
      If the guysm who also are underaged, were passed out, could I use their ass for my own amusment? And video it? Put it on YouTube maybe? After all, they are to blame their self...

      No wonder your country is going to hell....
      Luckely, there are some thinking persons in here!!

      March 20, 2013 at 7:17 am | Report abuse | Reply
  14. Carol Little

    The "Victim" must take partial responsibility for what happened to her. The mere fact that she allowed herself to drink to the point of oblivium is more than unacceptable behaviiour on the part of a 16 year old. The boys were found guilty and justly dealt with. I would hope that her parents are aware of this fact and take steps to imppress upon their child her part in this whole mess.

    March 19, 2013 at 11:27 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • scott

      How about the whole Ohio football town take responcibility for their kids actiona ( reflects their values). And Carole this whole generation of kids and their parents are desensitiesed and lost the art of family values and Hands on parenting.

      March 19, 2013 at 4:54 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • RB

      To blame???
      For being passed out????
      So, if an underaged person is passed out, does it give me the right to do what I want with them?
      Can I stick something in the ass to thos boys maybe? They deserve it for being drunk...
      You have to be stupid!!

      March 20, 2013 at 7:20 am | Report abuse | Reply
  15. Denise

    The girl should have never been drinking and put herself in that position! Wake mother!!!!!

    March 19, 2013 at 5:26 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • scott

      YES Denise!!!! But what about the parents of the football players? what about the faculty. What about the community? its a plauge thats growing and the apple dont fall far from the tree. Your children are the ambassidor to your family and values. Dont trow the blame at the victim. All have to take respocibility. Even you and me! time will tell wont it Denise..

      March 19, 2013 at 6:22 pm | Report abuse | Reply
      • RB

        What the hell is wrong with you???

        March 20, 2013 at 7:21 am | Report abuse |
      • RB

        SORRY!! That was for Denise!!
        NOT you Scott!!!

        March 20, 2013 at 7:21 am | Report abuse |
  16. scott

    Can anybody stamd up and say I made a mistake? set the tone that we all have to be connected to your community ( your childrens friends parents). Its a team effort and if you think its not, Well your in for a big reality check. Wake up call to all of us parents

    March 19, 2013 at 6:25 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  17. KarenR

    To those saying that the victim "chose" to drink herself into oblivion, I don't think she consciously made the choice. There were probably a combination of factors, too much alcohol for sure, but it has also seemed to me, from the descriptions that she never even moved or responded when the boys were treating her so roughly and horribly that she had to have been drugged with something. I know there are many "saints" out there who will say they never drank to excess, but I know that some of us who may have made that mistake once or twice know that you are just not "dead" to the world and that you are to some extent able to move and respond, especially if something horrible is being done to you, or if only to be sick until the effects wear off.
    And also regarding the mother not knowing where her daughter was at all times, I believe that none of the parents sent the kids out with carte blanche to drink and stay out all night. Most teenage kids are very creative when arranging to do something like party all night and probably had told parents that there would be chaperones and sleepovers at homes where parents were known to be responsible. Has anyone on here ever thought of one or two really stupid things they did as a teenager? I don't mean criminal like what these boys did, but maybe telling your parents you were sleeping over at your best friends when you were really going to a dance or party that wouldn't be approved by your parents? Very sad for the victim and how viciously she is being treated.

    March 20, 2013 at 8:04 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • Augustpoppy

      Could not agree with you more! Thank you for bringing some empathy and decency to the discussion

      March 20, 2013 at 4:51 pm | Report abuse | Reply
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