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November 5, 2013

Both sides rest in trooper trial

PLATTSBURGH — Trevor J. Donah’s attorney asked on Monday that all the charges against his client be dismissed.

“I think there are a number of insufficiencies in this case,” Brian Barrett  told Clinton County Court Judge Patrick McGill.

The prosecution and defense had both rested Monday afternoon in the trial of the state trooper, who is charged with attempted rape, second-degree assault and first-degree unlawful imprisonment, all felonies. And the jury had left the courtroom before Barrett made the request.

Franklin County Assistant District Attorney Elizabeth Crawford maintained the charges should stand.

“The people have met a burden (of proof), and it should be sent to a jury,” she told McGill.

With no court on Election Day, the judge scheduled a charge conference with the attorneys for 9:30 a.m. Wednesday; any closing statements to the jury are expected to take place at about 10 a.m. 

In two days of testimony, Crawford and Glenn McNeil, another Franklin County assistant district attorney, called five witnesses, including the ex-girlfriend who testified to the charges, and, on Monday, two physicians and a State Police sergeant.

The defense brought no witnesses to the stand.

‘A LOT OF SHAME’

In his testimony Monday morning, clinical and forensic psychologist Dr. Don Lewittes said a battered woman may never tell anyone about her situation — or disclosure could come long after the abuse occurred.

“It’s extremely embarrassing,” he told the jury in Clinton County Court. “There’s a lot of shame.”

On the stand last week, the ex-girlfriend testified that he grew enraged when she said she was going to contact a woman with whom she thought he’d become too intimate. The ex-girlfriend described Donah sitting on her, strangling her and keeping her pinned down to a bed until she promised not to call police.

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