BRENTWOOD — A Massachusetts high school student has been indicted on charges he raped a teenage girl outside a Salem restaurant and outside a movie theater in Epping.
A Rockingham County grand jury handed up felony indictments this month against Eliezer Tuttle, 18, of North Andover, Mass., for the alleged rapes of Feb. 17.
Tuttle, a senior at North Andover High School, faces four counts of aggravated felonious sexual assault and one count each of attempted aggravated felonious sexual assault and second-degree assault/strangulation.
He is also charged with four misdemeanors of simple assault.
Tuttle, who remains held at the Rockingham County jail, is accused of placing his hands around the 17-year-old girl’s throat, slapping her and pulling on her hair.
According to affidavits from Epping and Salem police, the girl met Tuttle at the Mall at Rockingham Park in Salem and they agreed to go out for breakfast at IHOP in town. According to the affidavits, she claims they never went inside the restaurant and that she was sexually assaulted in his vehicle.
The girl alleges she was assaulted again in the vehicle later that day after watching a movie at O’Neil Cinemas in Epping, according to the affidavits.
Tuttle has remained behind bars since turning himself in at the Salem Police Department on March 8.
Other students at North Andover High School have claimed they were also sexually assaulted by Tuttle, according to news reports.
His parents recently issued a statement through his attorney, Nicole Reilly, maintaining their son is innocent and accusing the media of mischaracterizing and vilifying him.
The statement reads in part, “Any previous uncharged allegations that were brought to the attention of the police were investigated thoroughly. ... As a result, the decision was made not to pursue criminal charges against Eli. Further, we are being attacked for protecting the rights of our son; we make no apology for utilizing the proper legal process to do so when his right to be free from harassment was violated.”