ANDERSON – It took a Madison County jury just 14 minutes to find an Ohio man innocent on charges of rape and criminal deviant conduct.
The jury returned the verdict of not guilty Thursday evening in the two-day trial of Torin Tigranes Jones, 47.
“My client was extremely happy,” defense attorney Evan Broderick said after the verdict was read in Madison Circuit Court Division 4.
Jurors said the state didn’t provide enough evidence and much of the evidence was not relevant to the charges that were filed.
Jones testified and most of the jurors believed his testimony was credible. They also wondered about the four-year delay in filing charges against Jones.
The Madison County deputy prosecutor’s office declined to comment on the acquittal.
The alleged attack took place in 2012 and Jones was not charged until 2016 through a DNA match while he was serving a prison sentence in Ohio on felony drug-related charges.
Jones testified during questioning by Broderick that he went to Big Baby’s bar in Anderson with a friend the night of April 28, 2012. He said the woman began flirting with him and that he sold her a Xanax pill.
He said the woman asked for monetary help, needing $200 to pay rent and also offered to sell drugs for him.
Jones said they went to the IHOP restaurant and then to the woman’s house with another couple. He reportedly provided them with more pills.
He testified they had consensual sex and that she never asked him to stop. Jones also denied slapping her in the face and sodomizing her.
Jones said when he woke up he found the woman taking money and pills from his pants and hiding it behind furniture.
“She said if I didn’t give her the money, she would call the police,” he testified.
Jones told jurors that he believed the filing of charges was in retaliation for not providing money to the alleged victim.
During cross-examination by deputy prosecuting attorney Mary Hutchison, Jones admitted to dealing drugs and indicated he went to the bar to sell Xanax.
Broderick said the defendant's statement has never changed that the sex was consensual.
The woman testified Wednesday that she and Jones started kissing and then having sex before Jones began to become "animalistic" and she told him to stop.
She said Jones held her down, hit her in the face and she began to fear for her life. She testified that Jones began to sodomize her.
Her roommate testified the woman had a black eye and swollen lip the following morning.
Nurse Holly Renz, of the Madison County Sexual Assault Treatment Center, testified when she examined the woman there was no evidence of physical injury.
Follow Ken de la Bastide on Twitter @KendelaBastide, or call 765-640-4863.