Defense drops bid to toss rape charge in teacher’s slaying

Chism's trial is scheduled to begin Oct. 7

(AP Photo/The Salem News, Ken Yuszkus, Pool, File)

SALEM, Mass. (AP) — Lawyers for a Massachusetts teenager accused of raping and killing his high school math teacher have dropped their request to get a sexual assault charge dismissed.

Sixteen-year-old Philip Chism is charged with murder in the 2013 slaying of 24-year-old Colleen Ritzer. Chism was 14 when authorities say he robbed, raped and stabbed Ritzer and left her body behind Danvers High School.

Chism’s lawyers filed a motion last week arguing that a grand jury had insufficient evidence to determine probable cause for one of the two aggravated rape charges. Prosecutors say the defense withdrew the request Wednesday.

Chism’s trial is scheduled to begin Oct. 7.


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