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2nd Basketball Player Arrested in Party Rape

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ALTUS Okla_ 7News is following new developments on a sexual assault that allegedly took place last weekend at an Altus house party.

Two Western Oklahoma State College basketball players are being held on charges of rape and sexual assault. Police arrested 18-year-old Daniel Alexander Wednesday and 18-year-old Knighe Rhoden early Saturday morning.

The two are accused of raping a woman at a party that took place Saturday night on Commerce Street. 7News Reporter Sarah Jensen was in Altus Thursday and talked to police about what led to the quick arrest of the suspects in this case.

Altus Police Chief Tim Murphy said it's the vast amount of information and cooperation from witnesses and the victim that quickly led them to the arrest of the two men.

What began as a small birthday party quickly grew into a large house party at a home on Saturday night in Altus. Police were called to the scene twice, but the crime that followed sent them to an Altus hospital to investigate.

"We responded to Jackson County Hospital shortly after 4:00AM on the 28th," Murphy said. "The staff there told us that they had a victim of a sexual assault."

The victim said that she and a girlfriend went to lie down in an empty bedroom inside the home during the party, and that's where the crime would occur.

"It appears that the victim didn't do anything wrong," Murphy said. "She is at a party and goes in and wants to go to sleep. Our two suspects go in and commit the crime."

The victim said that the sex was not consensual. In the court affidavit, she claims that she told Rhoden to stop, even pushing back at times. While the darkness of the room made it hard for the victim to identify the two suspects, Police Chief Tim Murphy said witness statements and evidence were the key.

"Witnesses were able to identify the suspects that were involved," Murphy said.

Once identified, the victim knew of both suspects.

"Both of our suspects are basketball players at Western Oklahoma State College," Murphy said.

In his initial interview with police, Rhoden claimed that the victim consented, ut he then changed his story admitting that he continued after the victim said no, eventually admitting what he did was wrong. 

WOSC released the following statement regarding the case:

"A media report has identified individuals who are try-outs for the Western men's basketball team.  Western is disheartened regarding the information contained in the media report and as is our longstanding practice, will cooperate fully with the local authorities as they investigate the report's allegations.

As the college will be conducting its own internal investigation it is our practice not to comment on on-going investigations.  At the conclusion of the college's investigation, a public statement will be issued."

Rhoden and Alexander are being held in Jackson County Jail on $50,000 and $25,000 bonds respectively.

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