Teen to be tried on two rape charges
EAGLE – A 17-year-old Battle Mountain High School junior will stand trial this August for allegedly raping two of his classmates. District Court Judge Richard Hart ruled Tuesday there is enough evidence for the boy to be tried on charges he raped a 16-year-old girl in October 2003. Hart ruled in April that there was enough evidence for the boy to be tried on charges he raped another classmate in June 2003. The boy, whose name is being withheld because he is a juvenile, entered a not guilty plea during Tuesday’s hearing. He faces separate jury trials on each rape charge. The trial for the alleged rape that happened in June 2003 will begin August 8. The trial for the other rape charge will begin August 10 or 11, depending upon when jury deliberations for the first trial begin.Prosecutors have charged the teen as a juvenile. If convicted, the boy could be sentenced to two years in a juvenile detention facility.During the hearing in April, the alleged victim from the June 2003 incident testified the boy had tried several times to unbuckle her belt even though she resisted. He pulled her pants down, held her hands over her head, put on a condom with one hand, and had sex with her, she said in testimony.Avon Police Det. Mike Leake testified Wednesday the there were similarities between the two rape cases. The alleged victim in the October 2003 incident also told police she was held down while the boy put on a condom and then raped her. Both girls reported the alleged rapes to police in February.The boy’s attorney, Terry O’Connor, questioned the credibility of witness statements in the second alleged rape. He pointed out that there had been a discrepancy about when the second rape occurred. It first was reported to have happened in 2004, instead of 2003. O’Connor also said witnesses reported they were skipping school the day of the alleged rape and were hanging out at the boy’s home in Wildridge when the incident occurred. But October 4, 2003 – when the rape allegedly occurred – wasn’t a school day, O’Connor said. He asked Leake if the date had been verified by police. Leake said no. “So you took it at face value?” O’Connor said. “Yes, I did,” Leake said. O’Connor also asked if any of the witnesses to the October incident had mentioned that the boy’s mother and sister were home when the alleged rape happened. Leake said no. Leake was the only person to testify Tuesday. The alleged victim from the October incident was in the courtroom but did not testify.During the hearing, the boy, dressed in a green detention uniform and in shackles, sat quietly next to his attorneys. He turned around a few times to speak to his parents, who were sitting behind him. The boy has been held in a Denver juvenile center without bail since his Feb. 24 arrest.Staff Writer Tamara Miller can be reached at 949-0555, ext. 607, or email@example.com.Vail, Colorado
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