Just a few hours ago, the jury in the trial of Former Oklahoma City Police Officer Daniel Holtzclaw returned a guilty verdict against him on 18 total counts of sex related crimes, including rape.
Holtzclaw, 29, hung his head and began sobbing and rocking back and forth as the verdicts were read. The jury found him guilty of 18 counts of sexual battery, rape and other offenses.
Holtzclaw was charged with 36 counts of rape, forcible oral sodomy, burglary and other charges.
The sentences recommended by the jury along with each guilty verdict add up to more than 260 years, NBC affiliate KFOR reported. Hotzclaw is scheduled to be sentenced in January. District Attorney David Prater said he will ask the sentences be served consecutively.
Assistant District Attorney Gayland Gieger told the court that Holtzclaw preyed on vulnerable women — all African American, most with police records — he stopped while on patrol.
The case had racial overtones, and attracted the interest of the Black Lives Matter movement. Holtzclaw is white, and all of his victims are black. The jury was made up of eight men and four women, all of whom appeared to be white.
Some supporters of the victims sang “Happy Birthday” — Holtzclaw turned 29 Thursday — outside court after the verdicts were read, KFOR reported.
The lead detective in the case, Kim Davis, said after the verdict: “I feel horrible for his family. It’s brutal, but I think justice was served,” The Associated Press reported.
Thirteen women took the stand and told strikingly similar stories — Holtzclaw coerced them into having sex after threatening to arrest them on outstanding warrants or for possessing drug paraphernalia.
Most didn’t dare report what allegedly happened to them to police. “I didn’t think anyone would believe me,” one woman testified. “I’m a black female.”
It wasn’t until a black woman in her 50s — identified in court papers as J.L. — came forward and told police what allegedly happened after Holtzclaw stopped her on June 18, 2014, that an investigation was launched.
So long as he doesn’t get the usual preferential treatment based on his having been a cop, Holtzclaw should more than likely not see the outside of a jail again. Especially since he used his shiny badge and magical uniform, along with the War on (Some) Drugs, to create the opportunity to commit those crimes in the first place.
Kelly is a lifelong resident of Las Vegas, who’s been very active in local grassroots activism, as well as on a national level during his extensive travels. He’s also the founder/main contributor of Nevada Cop Block, served as editor/contributor at CopBlock.org and designed the Official Cop Block Press Passes.
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