It's probably fair to say that things have gotten a little out of hand in Steubenville, Ohio, where two high school football players are accused of raping a 16-year-old while she was drunk. If you've read anything about the investigation and court case that's now unfolding you'll know that what started out as a suspicious sexual assault has turned into a national outrage, and local authorities are dealing with some pretty serious backlash that includes death threats being made against their families. On Wednesday night, CBS News reported that the FBI had opened an investigation into such threats on Jefferson County Sheriff Fred Abdalla's family and a suspected computer virus that targeted Steubenville Police Chief William McCafferty. It's unclear who the suspects might be, and the FBI isn't commenting on the probe. (The agency had said over the weekend that it was providing "some technical assistance" in the case, which an FBI spokesman described as routine.)
The small, football-crazed city of Steubenville obviously has been overwhelmed since scrutiny from Anonymous has been helping to elevate the rape investigation to viral status on the web. The firestorm of attention came to a head last weekend when 1,300 protesters descended on the town's city hall for an event dubbed Occupy Steubenville. Sheriff Abdalla even made an appearance, after having said on the radio that he was "coming after" Anonymous. (Since Anonymous doesn't take too well to threats, this might've had something to do with the death threats that he received over email and social media in the days after the rally.) Then, on Tuesday, police reported "some type of shooting threat" being made on social media prompting a lockdown on all local schools that lasted nearly two hours.