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Friday, September 14, 2018 1:00 am

Jury convicts rape defendant

Victim was woman with disabilities

MATTHEW LEBLANC | The Journal Gazette

Jurors on Thursday convicted a Fort Wayne man of raping a disabled woman.

Dressed in a black suit and tie with a white shirt, Jared L. Haynes, 48, showed no emotion as Allen Superior Court Judge Fran Gull read the verdict: guilty on two counts of rape.

Family and friends of the woman – who was not in court – sobbed nearby. Several hugged and shook hands with Allen County deputy prosecutors Tesa Helge and Tom Chaille after Haynes was led from the courtroom in handcuffs.

“Justice was served,” the woman's legal guardian said as she dabbed tears. “He got what he deserved.”

The Journal Gazette is not naming the guardian in order to conceal the identity of the victim. The newspaper does not identify the victims of sex crimes without their permission.

Haynes visited the woman's family around 7 p.m. April 9 and asked to take her to a gas station, according to court documents. The guardian called Haynes when they didn't return right away, but he didn't answer his phone, police said.

He dropped her off about three hours later and sped off, a probable cause affidavit alleged.

The woman told her guardian Haynes tied her up, pulled her pants down and smacked her in the face, court documents say. He threatened to shoot her with a realistic-looking silver BB or pellet gun presented as evidence in court Wednesday.

Haynes told detectives after his arrest he and the woman went to Walmart after driving away from her home.

He admitted to consensual sex but denied forcing her or showing her the weapon, according to the affidavit.

His lawyer, John Bohdan, declined to comment.

An Indiana State Police forensic biologist testified this week that DNA evidence taken from the woman was consistent with a sample Haynes gave to investigators.

The guardian said in an email to The Journal Gazette on Thursday she wanted to thank jurors, “as it was them who gave us light (through) a dark tunnel and gave us the justice she deserved.”

mleblanc@jg.net