Jury finds man guilty to lesser charges for raping woman while on first date

LOGAN — A jury has found Neal O. Eddington guilty to lesser charges, for raping a woman while the two were on a first date. The verdict in 1st District Court came early Friday morning, following the three-day trial.

According to a court clerk, the jury found Eddinton guilty of object rape, a first-degree felony, and misdemeanor sexual battery. The 24-year-old South Jordan man was originally charged with three counts of aggravated sexual assault and aggravated kidnapping.

Following the jury’s decision, Eddington was taken into custody again and transported to the Cache County Jail. He is scheduled to be sentenced June 11.

During the trial the victim claimed that on October 5, 2017, she and Eddington went to her Logan townhome to watch a movie. Afterwards, they went to her bedroom where he reportedly became forceful, ripping her pants and bra, and telling her he was going to, “break her.” She described how through the course of the night, the defendant forced her to perform oral sex multiple times, as she repeatedly told him “no.”

Defense attorneys claimed the victim didn’t allege to being raped until feeling ashamed that her roommates knew Eddington spent the night with her. They showed how her account of the assault changed from her previous testimony, given during a January preliminary hearing.

During the investigation, Eddington told investigators that the victim gave him confusing signals during the night. He said, she would tell him to stop and then tell him to start again. He said, he thought everything they did was consensual.

Eddington will be held in jail until sentencing. He could face up to five-years-to-life in prison.


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