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Three men arrested in videotaped rape of unconscious woman in Orange County

Two Santa Ana College football players and a male friend were charged with raping and sexually assaulting a drunk or unconscious woman last summer and videotaping the crime, Orange County prosecutors said Friday.

John Paul Foster II, 22, of Seaside in Monterey County, and Michael Alexander Clemmons, 19, of Tustin were arrested and arraigned this week in the July 2008 assault. The third suspect, Luster Ditto Lewis, 20, of Irvine, turned himself in Friday and was arraigned.

The three men, friends from Tustin High School, are each charged with multiple felonies. If convicted, they each face a maximum of 18 years in prison.

Clemmons is a running back for the Santa Ana College team, and Lewis is a wide receiver, according to the school's website.

Authorities say the men were drinking at the Key Inn hotel in the 1600 block of El Camino Real in Tustin. The 18-year-old victim, who knew the defendants through her boyfriend, came to the hotel after Lewis called her, police said.

She later passed out. Foster allegedly videotaped Clemmons and Lewis undressing the woman, positioning her body on the floor and assaulting her multiple times. Prosecutors accuse Foster of handing off the camera to sexually assault the woman and urinate on her.

Police are still investigating whether the woman was drinking and what caused her to pass out.

An associate of one suspect discovered the 19-minute recording Dec. 28 and gave it to police, Tustin police Lt. John Strain said.

All three suspects are being held in the Orange County Jail on $100,000 bail.

Santa Ana College officials are "reviewing the details of the charges," college spokeswoman Nikita Flynn said.

The discovery of a 19-minute-long videotape that prosecutors say shows graphic detail of a violent rape has landed two Santa Ana College football players and their friend in custody on several felony charges of rape, according to an Orange County District Attorney statement released today.

Prosecutors said the woman was unconscious at the time of the suspected rape.

Earlier this week, prosecutors charged football players Michael Alexander Clemmons, 19, of Tustin and Luster Mitchell Lewis, 20, of Irvine on suspicion of felony rape by use of an intoxicating substance and felony rape of an unconscious person in addition to several other sexual assault-related charges.

The pair's out-of-town friend, John Paul Foster II, 22, of Seaside in Monterey County, was also arrested on suspicion of the same charges, prosecutors reported today.

If convicted of all counts, each could face up to 18 years in state prison.

Just about a year ago, Gregory Haidl and his two high school friends were released from state prison after they were convicted of sexual assault charges in a case similar to this one. Haidl and two high school friends were accused of raping a girl, referred to in court as Jane Doe, on July 6, 2002, in the garage of a Corona del Mar home owned by Haidl's father, former Orange County Assistant Sheriff Don Haidl.

The younger Haidl was described by a prosecutor during a 2004 trial as the "maestro," who directed his friends in the videotaped sexual assault of an unconscious 16-year-old girl on a pool table.

On Sunday, an unidentified person handed over a 19-minute-long tape to Tustin police, who located the woman officials said was seen raped in the video.

The rape, prosecutors said, occurred in July after the three men were partying at the Key Inn at the 1600 block of El Camino Real in Tustin. Prosecutors said Lewis called a woman, who later passed out. The three are accused of knowing she was unconscious or incapacitated from intoxication and raping her, prosecutors added.

It's unclear why the woman was intoxicated.

Foster is accused of using a video camera and taping the sexual assaults against the woman, prosecutors stated.

Clemmons and Lewis are suspected of removing her clothes and moving her from a bed to the floor, where they put her body in different position as they raped her and sexually assaulted her in other ways, officials reported.

Foster then handed the camera to another one of the defendants and is also suspected of sexually assaulting the woman as the tape rolled.

Throughout the sexual assault, authorities said, the men slap the woman, who appears to be either unconscious or prevented from resisting because she was under the influence of an intoxicating substance.

At one point, prosecutors stated, the men are seen in the video slapping the woman in the face, telling her to wake up and holding her nose closed to suffocate her in order to wake her up, prosecutors reported.

Prosecutors said the three suspects became friends while attending Tustin High School, and Foster, who now lives on the Central Coast, visited his friends on occasion in Orange County.

Anyone with information is encouraged to contact Supervising Dist. Atty. Investigator Randy Litwin at (714) 347-8794 or Tustin Police Det. John Alvarado (714) 573-3250.

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Added: Jan-3-2009 Occurred On: Jan-3-2009
By: berlin_hamann
Tags: america, rape, woman, raped, and, videotaped
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