Two students arrested in Clinton Prairie locker room assault

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Two Clinton County teens faced a judge today in connection with three incidents that allegedly occurred at Clinton Prairie High School in late April.

19 year-old Kyle Johnson and his 18-year-old classmate, Austin Thomas Martin, heard the same charges at separate hearings - three counts of battery and three counts of criminal confinement - all for what they allegedly did to a freshman boy in their high school locker room.

"I've talked to Kyle as to what happened, very briefly, and I would think, layman's terms, his version would be that this was horseplay," said Johnson's attorney, Steve Knecht.

Prosecutors say it may have started that way, but eventually escalated into unwanted touching.

"One of the young men who is charged held the victim while the other one slapped or grabbed his butt cheeks," said Clinton County Prosecutor Anthony Sommer.

The victim, prosecutors say, never came forward. The incident surfaced only after students discovered a video of what happened on social media.

"Initially, there were some allegations of sexual battery or something like that, which caught the news and obviously that's not the case here," said Brian Dekker, Martin’s attorney.

Indiana State Police were called in to investigate the assault after a teacher at the high school heard rumors of the incidents. The seniors were suspended after school administrators spoke with at least two witnesses who saw the attacks.

The two men were booked into the Clinton County Jail around 3 p.m. Tuesday, but bonded out before their separate initial court appearances.

Both suspects face up to three years in prison for each D-level felony battery charge. Prosecutors say a D felony can, in some circumstances, be converted to a misdemeanor, which would mean even if the two are convicted, they would not face time behind bars.

One of the young men has already been expelled from school, the other is in the expulsion process. Both were planning on going to college, now neither will graduate high school.