Trial for man accused of raping woman while on first date concludes second day

LOGAN — The trial for Neal O. Eddington finished its second day of testimony in 1st District Court, with the alleged victim’s roommates and investigators taking the witness stand. Prosecutors also played a recorded phone call between the defendant and the victim, and an interview investigators had with Eddington. The 24-year-old South Jordan man is accused of raping a woman while the two were on a first date.

The day earlier, the victim described how on the night of October 5, 2017, the defendant became aggressive, threatening and forced her to perform oral sex multiple times. She claimed to have repeatedly told him “no,” at least 20 times.

During Wednesday’s testimony, the roommates told the court about being introduced to Eddington, after the victim invited him to their town home to watch a movie. One of the women explained having an uneasy feeling meeting him. A second roommate, who’s bedroom is next to the victims, said she never heard any loud noises, screams or calls for help that night.

Prosecutors then played a pretext phone call, recorded by police after the victim had reported the assault. On it, Eddington appears to sound shocked, when the victim tells him, he hurt her. He is heard saying, he thought she was enjoying what happened, and didn’t remember hearing her say stop.

Later, during a video recording of Eddington being interrogated by investigators, the defendant explained 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 told the investigator, he thought everything they did was consensual and he never forced her to do anything. He concluded saying, they fell asleep together, with her cuddling up to him.

Defense attorneys claim the victim didn’t allege to being raped until feeling ashamed that her roommates knew the defendant spent the night with her. The also believe the victim’s account of the assault changed from her previous testimony, given during a January preliminary hearing.

The trial is expected to continue through Thursday.

Eddington remains out of jail on bail. He has pleaded not guilty to all charges.

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