Second Teen in Rockville Rape Case Ordered To Be Released

Henry Sanchez Milian now faces two counts of possession of child pornography


Published:

The Montgomery County District Court in Rockville.

Joe Zimmermann

The rape charges have been dropped against the second teen accused in the Rockville High School rape case and he has been ordered to be released, according to court records.

The charges against Henry Sanchez Milian, the 18-year-old who was accused of attacking a 14-year-old girl at the high school during school hours in March, were officially dropped Tuesday and a judge ordered him to be released from custody, according to court records.

He now faces two counts of possession of child pornography, based on photos and videos the girl sent by cell phone to the other former suspect, Jose Montano, which he then allegedly shared with Sanchez Milian.

Rape charges against Montano were dropped in the Montgomery County District Court in Rockville on Friday. He is now facing two counts of possession and two counts of distribution of child pornography, his attorneys said.

[A Timeline of the Rockville High School Rape Case]

Montano appeared for a hearing on the child pornography charges in Montgomery County Circuit Courthouse in Rockville on Monday and was afterward taken into custody by Immigration and Customs Enforcement, his attorney David Wooten said Tuesday.

Both Sanchez Milian, who is from Guatemala, and Montano, from El Salvador, entered the country illegally last year to join family members in Montgomery County.

ICE spokesman Matthew Bourke said he could not comment on the status of Montano because he is a juvenile, but said there is an active detainer against Sanchez Milian. Sanchez Milian is not currently in ICE custody, according to Bourke.

Andrew Jezic, a Wheaton-based attorney representing Sanchez Milian, said Tuesday he was “elated and grateful” that the rape charges against his client were dropped, although he was disappointed that the Montgomery County State’s Attorney’s Office has levied child pornography charges against Sanchez Milian. He said a large percentage of teens send sexually inappropriate messages to other teens through their cell phones and most of them are never prosecuted.

“This is essentially the criminalization of adolescence in America and it’s a shame; it’s not right,” he said.

Jezic said this still holds true for cases where images are shared secondhand, and that “when anyone sends a naked picture, you’re going to assume that all rights to privacy are out the window” and that the image will be shared.

Wooten and Maria Mena, attorneys for Montano, made a similar argument Friday, stating at a press conference at the Circuit Court that it is “not fair” their client is facing these charges after all he has gone through and claiming that child pornography charges are almost always intended for adults, not other teens.

Ramon Korionoff, public affairs director of the State's Attorney's Office, said Friday the office previously has prosecuted teenagers for child pornography charges in cases involving other teens.

Sanchez Milian and Montano had initially been accused of raping the freshman girl in a brutal attack in a boys bathroom during the school day before prosecutors determined that the facts of the case did not support the charges.

Jezic said surveillance video at the school shows the girl hugging Montano and “very happily going to the bathroom” with him. The video shows that Sanchez Milian arrived at the bathroom with them, waited outside it, then later went inside and left the bathroom around the same time as Montano and the girl, Jezic said.

Prosecutors discovered the explicit photos and video on the phones of Montano and Sanchez Milian. Attorneys for Montano previously pointed to these photos as evidence that the encounter was consensual.

Sanchez Milian’s father, Adolfo Sanchez-Reyes, a 43-year-old citizen of Guatemala, had been arrested by ICE in March and is currently out on bail, awaiting his next hearing inimmigration court. Jezic, who is representing him, said Sanchez-Reyes is working 60 hours a week to pay off loans on the $20,000 bail.

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