In May, 38-year-old David Neal was accused of kidnapping a woman and brutally raping her during what was reported to be an assault fueled by crack cocaine. The alleged victim was not named at the time of reports because she was reportedly the victim of a sex crime.
The woman told District Court Judge J. Cedric Simpson that Neal had called her wanting to score crack cocaine. She then picked him up, and the two drove to a dealer’s residence, where they purchased the drugs and smoked some of the crack. The alleged victim then said that as she went to order more of the crack, Neal approached her from behind and held a knife to her throat. According to the woman, she was raped repeatedly at knife point from about 1 a.m. until 8 a.m. She testified that Neal said, “Lie with your face of the floor and take your clothes off or I’m going to stick you.”
Neal was originally charged with one count of assault with intent to murder, one count of assault with intent to do great bodily harm less than murder, two counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct, one count of unlawful imprisonment and interfering with the report of a crime, and one count of assault with a dangerous weapon.
Eventually during the ordeal, Neal allegedly tied the victim up placing an extension cord around her feet. He then placed duct tape on her mouth, eyes, and around her hands before placing her in the trunk of her car. At some point she escaped and fled to a neighbor’s house where the police were called in.
At his trial on Monday December 17, Neal vehemently denied all of the charges. The only statement he made in court on Monday was “I’m not guilty.” The jury did not convict Neal of the first-degree criminal sexual conduct charges, as Judge Melinda Morris said that the jury found unanimously that some element of consent to sexual activity was given by the alleged victim.
Ultimately, Neal was given four to six years in prison for assault with a dangerous weapon, 10 to 15 years for assault with intent to do bodily harm less than murder and unlawful imprisonment.
This incident demonstrates how often, individuals are accused of sex-related crimes they are not guilty of. In this situation, the jury found that the alleged victim did consent to sexual activity to some degree. Michigan sex crime attorneys know that had Neal been convicted on the charges, the punishment may have been far worse.
If you have been charged with sexual assault, rape, or any other sex-related offense, do not hesitate to contact a seasoned Michigan sex crime lawyer.