It took a six-member Geneva County jury less than an hour to decide the fate of a man charged with the rape of a seven-year-old girl.
Authorities say Douglas John Howell sexually mistreated the child over several months, but defense counsel claims the 18-year-old defendant was a victim of sexual abuse himself by relatives, and later foster families.
The jury heard vivid, graphic testimony during the three-day trial.
Late Thursday afternoon, that panel returned with a "guilty" verdict of rape.
The judge did not set a sentencing date, but Howell could possibly get a maximum sentence of life in prison.
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