Man not guilty in child sex abuse trial

26-year-old ac­quit­ted in case where tod­dlers con­tracted gon­or­rhea

San Antonio Express-News - - METRO - By El­iz­a­beth Zavala

A San An­to­nio man who had been ac­cused of sex­u­ally as­sault­ing two tod­dlers who con­tracted gon­or­rhea was found not guilty Fri­day by a Bexar County jury.

Adrian Vigil, 26, took a deep breath, closed his eyes and nod­ded his head at the jury af­ter vis­it­ing Judge Philip A. Kazen read the panel’s ver­dict in Felony Im­pact Court.

Ju­rors be­gan de­lib­er­a­tions around noon Thurs­day and were re­leased about 5 p.m. with­out reach­ing a ver­dict. They re­turned at 8:30 Fri­day morn­ing, de­liv­er­ing the ver­dict a few hours later.

Vigil de­clined to com­ment as he left the court­room.

“I think we had an ex­tremely smart, at­ten­tive jury, and they took their time with ev­i­dence and tes­ti­mony,” said David Woodard, Vigil’s at­tor­ney.

Pros­e­cu­tors Steve Speir and Brit­tany Byrd re­ferred ques­tions to the Bexar County Dis­trict At­tor­ney’s Of­fice, which did not re­turn calls.

Vigil was 23 when he was ar­rested and charged with two counts of su­per ag­gra­vated sex­ual as­sault of a child af­ter med­i­cal ex­am­i­na­tions found two girls he knew and had con­tact with, ages 1 and 3, had tested pos­i­tive for gon­or­rhea, a sex­u­ally trans­mit­ted dis­ease.

The chil­dren’s mother tes­ti­fied that the chil­dren were be­lieved to

have been as­saulted some­time in Oc­to­ber 2015. She said Vigil was never alone with her chil­dren.

Child Pro­tec­tive Ser­vices in­ves­ti­gated the case, and a case­worker tes­ti­fied that she was sus­pi­cious be­cause Vigil with­held in­for­ma­tion from the agency re­gard­ing his

own sex­ual as­sault and changed some of his re­sponses to ques­tions, which gave them “rea­son to be­lieve” he could have as­saulted the tod­dlers.

In clos­ing ar­gu­ments Thurs­day, Speir and Byrd re­it­er­ated what they had told the ju­rors in open­ing state­ments: to pay at­ten­tion to CPS tes­ti­mony that Vigil wasn’t hon­est. They also pointed out that although the chil­dren’s mother

had tested pos­i­tive for the dis­ease, Vigil was the only per­son with the dis­ease who had con­tact with the chil­dren.

Woodard main­tained from the start that the state’s case was based on noth­ing but as­sump­tions and that the chil­dren could have been ex­posed to the sex­u­ally trans­mit­ted dis­ease in other ways, not just from Vigil. He re­minded the jury that the chil­dren’s mother

told au­thor­i­ties she never left her girls alone with the man and re­it­er­ated that in her tes­ti­mony.

“At the end of the day, there wasn’t enough ev­i­dence to con­vict Adrian, and the jury came up with the right res­o­lu­tion,” Woodard said.

This was a re­trial for Vigil, who ini­tially went to court in April. Those pro­ceed­ings ended in mis­trial be­cause the de­fense wasn’t

told be­fore­hand, as re­quired, about ev­i­dence the pros­e­cu­tion pre­sented in court.

Kazen told Vigil that he could have his record ex­punged and have the charges sealed since he was ac­quit­ted. It was un­clear Fri­day af­ter­noon whether he planned to do that.

Billy Calzada / Staff pho­tog­ra­pher

De­fen­dant Adrian Vigil, 26, was found not guilty on two counts of su­per ag­gra­vated sex­ual as­sault on a mi­nor.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.