The Lynn Item reports that William Townsend of Lynn, Massachusetts has been charged with Assault With the Intent to Commit Murder, Rape and Assault and Battery by Means of a Dangerous Weapon. The charges follow a weekend where the complainant, Townsend’s former girlfriend fell off the wagon and engaged in a lengthy partying binge.
The police responded to a call for Domestic Violence at an undisclosed address. When they arrived they found the complainant barefoot in the rain. She purportedly displayed bruises described as both old and new. She told the police that Townsend tried to throw her out of a window on the second floor. She was eventually taken to a local hospital. There she told attending personnel that Townsend had repeatedly raped her. Meanwhile, back at the scene police went up to the second floor, kicked the door in and arrested Townsend.
The complainant told police that she had been sober for fourteen months and that she fell off the wagon this past Friday. She met up with friends and family and began drinking heavily. She then went to visit Townsend who was apparently her first boyfriend. There, she continued drinking with the defendant. On Monday evening the woman reported that Townsend demanded the two have sex. Having AIDS she declined. The two continued to drink for several more hours, passing out. The next day Townsend continued to demand sex. The woman again declined and Townsend passed out yet again. She claims that when she went to wake him up Townsend grabbed her, smashed her head against a wall and threatened to throw her out of the second floor window. He threw her out of the apartment and the police were called. Charges are now pending in the Lynn District Court
Any Massachusetts Criminal Defense Lawyer will tell you that cases like this often enjoy a multitude of defenses. Think about this from a purely factual standpoint. The complainant’s credibility is suspect from the start. She started drinking on Friday and continued until she passed out on Monday night. Just how much of that weekend could she have remembered with any degree of detail? She claims that Townsend demanded sex and raped her notwithstanding the fact that she has AIDS. How many people are willing to risk contracting a deadly disease? Now think about the independent corroborating evidence in this case. What do the hospital records show? Did the two in fact have sex? Was the bruising both new and old as characterized by the police? How about the complainant’s head. Were there bruises or cuts corroborative of her account of having her head smashed into the wall. Remember that Mr. Townsend’s account of the weekend is probably much different than the woman’s. Defense lawyers rarely share the details of their defense at an arraignment. If bail was set in the amount of three thousand dollars as stated in the article then the judge probably got a good read on the viability of these charges. It would not surprise me to see this case remain in the district court.
Attorney Stephen Neyman has been defending the accused for over twenty years. Our office has defended Rape Cases in Lynn, Massachusetts and throughout Massachusetts. Call us anytime at 617-263-6800 or contact us online if you have a criminal matter to discuss.