>Former Sheriff employee acquitted on rape charges

>Ryan D. Hunt was acquitted on all charges Thursday evening following a trial in the Darke County Common Pleas Court. The jury deliberated approximately 45 minutes before returning a verdict of Not Guilty. 

The story below originally appeared on DarkeJournal on August 5, 2009:

On July 23, 2009 the Darke County Grand Jury indicted Ryan D. Hunt, age 27 of New Madison, OH on two counts of Rape. Each count of Rape is a felony of the first degree with a minimum mandatory sentence of three years up to a maximum of ten years in prison. This indictment was the result of a criminal investigation conducted by the Darke County Sheriff’s Office. On June 29, 2009 the Darke County Sheriff’s Office received a report that Ryan D. Hunt had allegedly raped an adult female in southern Darke County. The case which is still actively being investigated was forwarded to the Darke County Prosecutor’s Office for review and subsequently presented to the July session of the Darke County Grand Jury.

At the time of this offense Ryan D. Hunt was employed as a probationary corrections officer and worked in the Darke County Jail. Ryan D. Hunt was not a certified law enforcement officer or certified corrections officer because he had not attended any academy or completed probationary status. Ryan D. Hunt was hired on August 18, 2008. He was placed on administrative leave with pay on June 29, 2009. On July 2, 2009 Ryan D. Hunt voluntarily resigned from the Darke County Sheriff’s Office.

[press release from the Darke County Sheriff’s Office]

  1. #1 by Anonymous on October 22, 2010 - 5:31 pm

    >I always knew he was innocent.

  2. #2 by Tracy on October 22, 2010 - 6:13 pm

    >Never thought for a moment he was guilty! This is one time justice was served!!

  3. #3 by Anonymous on October 22, 2010 - 6:19 pm

    >being proven innocent in a Darke county court does not make ME feel better-WILL remember this face

  4. #4 by Richard on October 22, 2010 - 6:29 pm

    >nothing better than protecting there own huh!

  5. #5 by Tracy on October 22, 2010 - 6:46 pm

    >He was proven innocent by a jury, obviously there was insufficient EVIDENCE that a crime was committed. Believe it or not, there are INNOCENT people that have been "accused" of a crime. How many innocent people are serving time in prison? Be thankful it wasn't one of you or your family members being "accused"

  6. #6 by Mike the Mechanic on October 22, 2010 - 6:51 pm

    >Always remember that many things are against the law, but prosecution is selective.

  7. #7 by Darke Journal on October 22, 2010 - 6:55 pm

    >Nobody is ever found "innocent." Mr. Hunt was declared "not guilty" because the state didn't meet its burden to prove the crime beyond a reasonable doubt. From what I heard, the State thought it had a confession, but apparently the jury didn't agree. A poor case if decided in 45 minutes.

  8. #8 by Tracy on October 22, 2010 - 7:03 pm

    >There are totally "Innocent" people who have been committed of a crime in this country, and people who have been found innocent that were in fact guilty. Possibly the jury decided in 45 minutes because of the burden of proof?

  9. #9 by Anonymous on October 22, 2010 - 9:04 pm

    >I was on the jury. Nothing in the evidence made any of us 12 feel he committed the crime of rape. The man is free and will enjoy his family and the rest of his life. Lots of lessons learned in this case for many people.

  10. #10 by Killer on October 22, 2010 - 11:57 pm

    >The system does work!

  11. #11 by Anonymous on October 23, 2010 - 1:59 am

    >Obviously lots of alcohol while partying with close friends can cause many wrong decisions. I agree, lots of lessons were learned for a lot of people during this case.

  12. #12 by Anonymous on October 23, 2010 - 10:19 am

    >Mr. Juror who posted on 5:04: I applaud and commend you and your eleven co-jurors. Your unanimous, lightning-quick decision proves that this was irresponsible, frivolous prosecution. I'm sure Hunt's family had to spend a lot of money for his defense, to say nothing of their grief and anxiety for a year and a half. How much taxpayer's money was spent in this futile exercise? Very sad.

  13. #13 by Anonymous on October 23, 2010 - 3:03 pm

    >My family and I would like to wish the Hunt family the best of luck and a worry free life with those around them.

  14. #14 by Anonymous on October 23, 2010 - 5:08 pm

    >My guess is that the jury just wanted to go home and didn't care one way or another. From what I heard; after the trial, the jury didn't want to stick around and talk to the attorneys… In my opinion, that's one clue.

  15. #15 by Anonymous on October 23, 2010 - 7:36 pm

    >My guess would be listening to 3 days of testimony and having no evidence wore them out. So they didn't want to stick around and talk to the attorneys, I am sure they wanted to go home to their families like Mr. Hunt did. If i was Mr. Hunt I would file a civil suit against her for ruining his life for a year with false alligations and tax payer money she wasted.

  16. #16 by Anonymous on October 23, 2010 - 8:18 pm

    >DJ I agree 100%

  17. #17 by Anonymous on October 23, 2010 - 11:05 pm

    >When you have 12 randomly-selected people (6 men and 6 women I heard) and they reach a unanimous decision in 45 minutes (remember, they spent much of that time organizing and electing a foreman), it's a little more than just wanting to go home. They were all firmly convinced by the evidence that the charges were groundless.

  18. #18 by Anonymous on October 23, 2010 - 11:14 pm

    >That's the point. Lack of evidence doesn't make him innocent. Hopefully, he is. Just saying it's not like anybody will ever know…….

  19. #19 by Anonymous on October 24, 2010 - 4:14 am

    >Where did the 45 iminutes come from? How many of you were there?

  20. #20 by Anonymous on October 24, 2010 - 11:56 am

    >Jury sent to deliberations at or about 4:30 PM; returned verdict at or about 6:10 PM. Of course it doesn't make him innocent, but he was found not guilty which is all you can get out of the legal system.

  21. #21 by Anonymous on October 24, 2010 - 8:15 pm


  22. #22 by Anonymous on October 25, 2010 - 2:18 am

    >he was found not guilty and I believe him and his family has been through enough without more ridicule on here. I wish the Hunt family all the luck and happiness that they deserve!

  23. #23 by Anonymous on October 25, 2010 - 6:52 am

    >How trials work. First a standard motion is filed in every trial called a "Motion in Limine". A Motion in Limine is a motion asking the court to not allow the other lawyer to talk about or introduce certain testimony and exhibits that could kill the client's case. Jurrors are not always allowed to see all the evidence so they can decide who is right. Second important step-Each lawyer job is to show you clips of evidence that the lawyer wants you to focus on. A good lawyer knows that if they can get you to focus on only their evidence, they control what you believe. "What you focus on is what you believe"In 1997, a man tortured and murdered an Engilsh teacher to get his PIN for his ATM card. The man confussed to the crime in great detail. There was a witness stating the accused withdrawal from the ATM at the relevant time. However, the jury found him not guilty. The reason a photograph was taken of the accused during police interrogation. The jurors stated the photo made him look wasted. The jurors did not beleive the confession. The defense lawyer convinced the jurors to focus on the photograph instead of the evidence. In 2000, a man was accused of child molestation. Two nine years old girls testified in great detail about the abuse the man had inflicted on them. The defensae was the man ex-girlfriend had encoraged the two little girls to make up those stories.The defence lawyer reported their theory over and over, through out the trail. This classic stratery is used by trail lawyers, professional marketers and advertisers. This is called repetition– and is very powerful. The defense lawyer convinced the jurors that the two little girls could not be believed- he succeeded. Two years later in 2002, the same man kidnapped a five year old girl. She was raped and asphyxiated. In reality the legal system is not perfect.It not always based on if a person is guilty or not.

  24. #24 by Anonymous on October 25, 2010 - 8:57 pm

    >Anon. 2:52So oooo, you're saying that the legal system is as corrupt as most people believe it to be?

  25. #25 by Anonymous on October 26, 2010 - 10:32 pm

    >2:52am is right, it is not uncommon in trials that all evidence collected/discovered is not always permitted to be presented in the trial. Wouldn't it be interesting if a jury or judge could actually see and hear the whole story and let them decide what to believed or not to believe. I wonder how much evidence was not presented or was not permitted to be presented in this case. Would it have made a difference, maybe so, maybe not, but wouldn't it be interesting to hear the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth involving the entire investigation of any case. The justice system is not perfect but it is the best system currently practiced in the world. With this system however, people do slip through the cracks, the good and the bad. Only two people truly know exactly what happened.

  26. #26 by Anonymous on October 28, 2010 - 2:55 am

    >According to the World Book of Encyclopedia entry for "Rape" only 2% of accussed rapists are convicted. In contrast FBI studies indicate that only 2% of all rape reports are false."Low conviction rates result from insufficient evidence to prosecute, dismissal of trail due to techicalities and reluctance of victims to testify. For this reasons, low conviction rates do not imply false reporting. "According to The New Encyclopaedia Britannices rapists also have high acquittal rates due to the fact that there are often no witnesses to the crime.

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