Gramercy man found not guilty of rape

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, November 10, 1999

ERIK SANZENBACH / L’Observateur / November 10, 1999

CONVENT – A jury of nine men and three women found a Gramercy man charged with raping his step-daughter not guilty Friday.

William Sharon, 23, was tried for the aggravated rape of his 7-year-old step-daughter, now living with his estranged wife, sometime between October 1997 and March 9, 1998.

He was arrested in March 1998 and spent eight months awaiting trial, before being released on bond.

The trial itself, before 23rd Judicial District Judge Alvin Turner Jr.,lasted three days, during which Sharon took the stand and denied all charges. The alleged victim testified by closed-circuit television.Following a one-hour deliberation Friday, the St. James Parish juryreturned a verdict of not guilty, and Sharon was released. Sharon had noprior criminal record.

Prosecutor for the case was Joe Wiley. Defending attorney was Daniel”Becket” Becnel of LaPlace.

Becnel added there was no medical evidence to support the allegation and said, “It’s unfortunate they arrested him within 12 hours of the allegation and did no further investigation.”

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