former Idaho lawmaker convicted of teenage rape Who was arrested at State House after a dramatic trial in which the victim emerged from the witness stand.
A jury found Aaron von Illinger, 39, guilty of raping a 19-year-old legislative intern in his apartment after having dinner with her at a Boise restaurant last March.
Von Ellinger, a Republican who stepped down as Lewiston’s representative a month after he was indicted, has been found not guilty of sexual penetration with a foreign object. He confirmed that the meeting was by mutual consent.
The former MP faces at least a year in prison and is facing life behind bars in the sentencing scheduled for July.
The unknown accused took her position during the second day of the trial before suddenly changing her mind.
She said before standing up.
“I can’t do this,” she said briskly before leaving the courtroom.
When she did not return, her testimony was crossed from the record because the defense had no opportunity to cross-examine her.
Prosecutors praised the young woman’s courage at a post-trial press conference.
“It took an incredible amount of courage for the victim in this case, Jane Doe, to come forward,” said Jean Bennetts, Ada County District Attorney.
“I want to acknowledge the courage you have shown in the future.”
Von Illinger remained calm when the verdict was read out after seven hours of deliberation. He had told the jury that he asked the intern to “go out” after dinner at a fancy restaurant, and said they ended up going out in his apartment.
“Things were going well,” said von Illinger, “and I asked (Doe) if she’d like to move into the bedroom.” “Sure,” she said. “We got up, clasped our hands, and went into the bedroom.”
Prosecutors argued that the then-actor abused “social, political, and physical power over the young apprentice”.
“He used that force to rape and forcibly penetrate her,” Deputy Attorney General Caitlin Farley told the jury during closing arguments.
A nurse testified that the teen had hit a “goose egg” on the back of her head when she hit her in an attempt to escape from Von Illinger, who she said pinned her and forced her to perform oral sex while his gun was displayed on a wardrobe near his bed.
Defense attorneys argued that the prosecution’s case was full of “responses,” and said von Illinger’s testimony was credible.
Another ex-employee, lobbyist, and Tell the Boise Ethics Committee That von Ehlinger’s attempts at courtship made them “uncomfortable” last April.
Publicity from a legislative investigation into Republican behavior led to the accused being kidnapped online by some of his political supporters. One of her harassers tried to attend the trial but was removed from the courtroom.
with AP . wires