A former Republican state lawmaker from Idaho has been found guilty of raping a 19-year-old intern last year.
After 11 hours of deliberation the jury found Aaron von Ehlinger, 39, guilty of rape following a three day trial during which the intern who testified under the pseudonym Jane Doe, fled the witness stand in the middle of her emotional testimony, according to the Daily Beast.
“He tried to put his fingers between my legs and I closed my knees,” she said, standing up.
“I can’t do this,” she added and walked out of the room.
Her departure meant her testimony was struck entirely from the record because the defense was not able to cross-examine her.
Ehlinger told the court that the encounter had been consensual. He said that he and the intern had gone out to dinner at a Boise steakhouse and things went “well”. Ehlinger claims she held his hand on the ride back to his apartment, and that she willingly accompanied him to his bedroom and performed oral sex on him for about 15 seconds before stopping and saying it was “probably not a good night to have sex” because she hadn’t shaved and wasn’t on birth control. He claimed he then stimulated himself manually and ejaculated on her stomach with her consent, the Daily Beast reports.
But, prosecutor Katelyn Farley told the court that Ehlinger had told the intern that he needed to stop by his apartment after dinner to pick something up. When they arrived at his apartment, he picked her up and carried her into his bedroom where he assaulted her, forcing his penis into her mouth and holding her arms down as he ejaculated on her stomach.
Earlier this week the jury heard testimony from investigators and a nurse who conducted a rape exam. They said that the intern said she was held down and that Ehlinger forced her to perform oral sex.
The nurse said the intern had a “goose egg” on her head from hitting Ehlinger’s wall or headboard as she struggled to break away.
Ehlinger will be sentenced on 28 July.