A Capitol Heights sex crime has resulted in an 8-year prison sentence, after a former deacon was convicted of sexual assault of a prostitute at gunpoint.
Capitol Heights defense attorneys understand the 27-year-old defendant had pleaded guilty two months ago to first-degree sexual abuse, as defined in D.C. Code 22-3002, and possession of a gun while committing a violent crime.
In an interesting twist, the defendant, a church deacon at the time of the 2007 offense, was reportedly applying for a job as a police officer with the Baltimore Police Department.
Here's what we know of the case, according to court records, media reports and U.S. Department of Justice releases:
The suspect reportedly picked up a 23-year-old prostitute in downtown Washington D.C. He reportedly agreed to pay for sexual services from the woman, and the two ended up parked near 10th and O Streets NW. Before the prostitute would engage in the sex act, she requested upfront payment.
Now it's important to note that up to this point, both of the individuals could have potentially been arrested for prostitution or solicitation of prostitution. For a first offense, you're looking at a $500 fine and up to three months in jail. Penalties go up from there.
However, it's what happened next that drew such attention.
The deacon reportedly pulled out a gun, pointed it at the woman's head and said he did not intend to pay for the sexual acts. She later told investigators that she complied with his demands, as she feared for her life.
Afterward, the man released the victim. He then drove back to the area where he had originally picked her up. There, she and a friend saw his car and called police.
He was eventually stopped a few blocks from his home. His lawfully-purchased handgun was found in his car.
As this was a clear he-said-she-said scenario, what became a critical piece of evidence for the prosecution was a condom the defendant had used during the incident. His DNA was recovered from that condom.
He has been in custody since his arrest in 2007. A jury found him guilty way back in 2008 on charges of first-degree sexual abuse with aggravating circumstances, possessing a firearm in the commission of a crime of violence, possession of an unregistered firearm and carrying a pistol without a license.
The defendant then appealed part of that verdict, based on instructions that the trial court gave to jurors prior to the decision.
It was just last month that he pleaded guilty to two of those crimes mentioned above.
With time-served, he could be released by 2015.
If you are facing sex crimes in Capitol Heights or D.C., contact the Law Office of Daniel A. Gross, PLLC for a free and confidential consultation to discuss your rights or fill out our online contact form. Visa, Mastercard and Discover cards accepted. Call 202-596-5716.