Hemet Man Convicted After Being Linked to Previously Unsolved Rapes by DNA
A Hemet, California man was convicted last month on two felony counts of forcible rape after his trial in Orange County District Court.
Kevin Lawrence Saint John, 45, had his case go to an Orange County jury on August 20. The jurors came back with a unanimous verdict of guilty on both counts. According to the Orange County district attorney's office, Saint John's charges also carried additional sentence enhancement allegations.
Prior to his trial, prosecutors alleged that Saint John raped two 21-year-old women over the course of a month. In both cases, Saint John forced the young women to go to a secluded area where he sexually assaulted them.
These two rape cases, which were the basis of a serious investigation went unsolved for years. However, during the year 2012, Saint John's DNA profile was entered into a state database after he was convicted on felony charges of receiving stolen property.
Saint John was released after serving a brief prison sentence for the receipt of stolen property conviction. However, he was rearrested after his DNA profile was linked to the two unsolved 2004 rapes. Saint John faces sentencing for his crimes on September 17.
California Rape Law
According to the California Penal Code, rape is an unlawful act, which is defined as follows:
[Sexual intercourse] accomplished against a person's will by means of force, violence, duress, menace, or fear of immediate and unlawful bodily injury on the person or another. (California Penal Code, Section 261)
Legal Counsel For Defendants Charged With Sex Crimes
Under California law, a rape conviction can carry a long prison sentence. When charged with any serious sex crime in the state of California, having an experienced criminal defense team is imperative. At the Law Office of Nicolai Cocis, we handle criminal defense matters of all kinds, from DUI allegations to rape crime allegations such as these. From our office near the Southwest Justice Center, we assist clients from Lake Elsinore, Hemet, Temecula, Murrieta, Wildomar, Menifee, Perris, Banning, Corona and many other Riverside County communities. If you or a loved one needs to speak with a lawyer, please feel free to contact us today for a free initial consultation.