Jury delivers guilty verdicts in rape case

After 17 hours of deliberation Wednesday and into Thursday morning, a district court jury in Marion found three Peabody residents guilty of two counts of rape, aggravated criminal sodomy and aggravated kidnapping involving a 14-year-old girl.

As the individual verdicts were read, Terry Bowen, 63, gave a startled look at his attorney and slumped back in his seat, Lora J. Gay, 38, bowed her head shaking no and, her son Kenneth Frederick, 22, sat motionless and staring straight ahead.

The eight men and four women on the jury started deliberating about 9 a.m. Wednesday and continued through Thurs?day morning until coming to a decision at 1:15 a.m. Other than a 20-minute break for sandwiches at about 6 p.m., the jury continued its work uninterrupted.

The majority of the attorneys involved and 8th Judicial District Judge Michael Powers said the length of time for deliberations was not typical.

David Harger, the court-appointed attorney representing Bowen, said in his experience, it was ?unusual? for the jury to be out 17 hours straight.

The first inkling that the jury might be nearing a verdict came about 10:50 p.m. when a note was sent out to Powers that they were close to a decision. Then just after midnight, a note was sent out asking for the definition of kidnapping and how the word ?confinement? relates to it.

By 12:15 a.m., Charles Klebe, with the Kansas Attorney General?s office, and the other court-appointed attorneys, Gary Price of McPherson, representing Gay, and David Snapp of Newton, representing Frederick, along with their clients were back in the courtroom.

Following about a 10-minute discussion citing case law on the definition of ?confinement? and what each side thought, the judge ruled in favor of the state?s argument to elaborate by saying that confinement requires ?no particular distance or removal or time and place.?

Once the jury had that information, it took them less than one hour to come to a unanimous verdict.

As a matter of dignity to their clients, Harger requested that Gay, Bowen and Frederick be allowed to change from their orange jail uniforms to their street clothes.

The three defendants walked back into the courtroom at 1:30 p.m., shackled at the wrists and ankles to hear their fate.

Prior to reading the verdict, Powers warned everyone present to refrain from expressing emotions. Nine armed law enforcement officers were strategically located in the courtroom to ensure order.

In addition to the guilty verdicts for rape, kidnapping and sodomy, Gay and Frederick were both also found guilty of criminal threat. The three defendants were found not guilty of a battery charge.

The sentencing hearing is scheduled for 11 a.m. Aug. 9 at the district court in Marion.

More details on the trial will appear in the July 6 edition of the Free Press. -+3+

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