• Man who declined to attend trial convicted of sex assault
    September 18,2013
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    By Patrick McArdle
    Staff Writer

    BENNINGTON - After deliberating for less than an hour, a jury found a local man, who declined to be in the courtroom for his trial, guilty of a felony count of sexual assault with no consent.

    William O. Stanley Sr., 52, had only been out of prison for a few weeks when new charges were filed against him.
    Stanley was convicted of escaping from custody in 2005. He declined to attend that trial as well.

    The woman who accused Stanley said during the trial, which took place on Tuesday and Wednesday, that she and her boyfriend had gone to the Rutland jail in late September 2012 to pick-up Stanley after the end of the sentence he received for the escape charge.

    The woman was related to Stanley but hadn't seen him in 20 years. She had come to Vermont from California in an attempt to reconnect with Stanley.

    On Oct. 10, however, she reported that Stanley had touched her on two different occasions on that date. Stanley was arraigned on the sexual assault charge and a felony charge of lewd and lascivious conduct on Oct. 11.

    The jury found Stanley not guilty of lewd and lascivious conduct.

    The jury convicted Stanley of touching the woman in a Bennington motel room she was in with Stanley and her boyfriend but not for allegedly touching her, later the same day, while the woman, her boyfriend and Stanley were driving in Bennington in a truck.

    Stanley was not sentenced on Wednesday.
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