(Bay City News) – Two separate juries have reached verdicts in a trial against two young men accused in connection with the gang rape of a teenage girl at Richmond High School during a 2009 homecoming dance.
Contra Costa County Superior Court Judge Barbara Zuniga is set to read the verdicts for 22-year-old Jose Montano, of Richmond, and Pinole resident Marcelles Peter, 20, in Martinez on Thursday afternoon.
Both were tried on charges of rape in concert, oral copulation in concert and sexual penetration with a foreign object in concert, along with special allegations of inflicting great bodily injury on the victim.
The verdicts follow a dual trial against the two defendants, who are the first to stand trial out of the six men jailed for their roles in the gang rape in a dark courtyard of the Richmond High campus in October 2009. Deputy District Attorney John Cope said the victim, referred to at trial as Jane Doe, was raped, beaten and robbed during a more than two-hour period as about 20 boys and men watched.
After an uninvolved student walking by the area called police, officers found the girl comatose with head trauma, burns, hypothermia and a near-fatal 0.35 percent blood-alcohol level, according to Cope.
In a rare move, two separate juries were assigned to the two defendants. The two groups attended most of the trial together but deliberated separately.
Peter’s jury returned a verdict Wednesday after seven hours of deliberations, while the jury for Montano reached a verdict today after deliberating for about 11 hours, according to a court clerk.