An Ohio State drum major instructor has been arrested on charges of rape and kidnapping. Both charges are considered to be first-degree felonies and carry a possibility of quite a bit of prison time. Stewart Kitchen, 28, was charged yesterday with the horrific crime.
Kitchen was accused of raping and kidnapping an OSU student earlier this month. According to The Columbus Dispatch, Franklin County Court records show that Stewart asked the young woman to have drinks with him on April 15, and then he took her back to his University District home, and raped her.
According to the court records, the young woman asked Stewart to take her home on several occasions, but instead of doing as he was asked, Stewart forced the girl into his bedroom, where he made her have sex with him.
Christopher S. Kitchen was a drum major for the Ohio State University marching band in 2006 and 2007, before he became an employee of the School of Music. Kitchen is an instructor as well as a coach for the band’s drum majors. The Lantern reports that as of yesterday, Kitchen has been placed on paid administrative leave pending an internal investigation. OSU also released a statement to the media about the situation.
“The university is deeply concerned to learn of criminal allegations against one of our employees of kidnapping and sexual assault,” the statement said. “He was taken into custody today by law enforcement officials, and we will continue to assist them in their efforts. Since this is an ongoing law enforcement investigation, the university is limited in its ability to provide additional comment at this time.”
Kitchen graduated from Ohio State in 2010, and made headlines this past February for selling his OSU breastplate and hat from his marching band uniforms, to help pay for his mother’s cancer treatments. Stewart’s mom was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer called angiosarcoma. The cancer affects the inner lining of the blood vessels, and can be extremely difficult to treat. Kitchen raised over $2000 through the auction, and the money went directly to help his mother pay for her treatments.
This is unfortunately, not the first time that the OSU marching band has faced severe scrutiny over some sort of sexual allegations amongst its staff. This past year, Ohio State actually fired the band director, Jonathon Waters, for allowing a sexualized culture within the band. OSU says that there have been at least three sexual assaults in the band since 2011.
Kitchen appeared in the Franklin County Municipal Court this morning for his arraignment, and his bail was set at $50,000.
[Photo courtesy of The Columbus Dispatch]