Man convicted in case of Oregon woman held captive for weeks
DALLAS, Ore. (AP) — After two years of hearings and motions a West Salem man was convicted in a trial by a judge Wednesday of kidnapping, sexually abusing and raping a woman for 44 days.
Polk County Judge Norman Hill found Ronnie Lee Jr. guilty of 29 counts, which ranged from methamphetamine charges to second-degree kidnapping to first-degree rape, sodomy and unlawful sexual penetration, The Statesman Journal reported .
Lee, 48, was found not guilty on five misdemeanor counts of assault.
Lee was arrested in October 2015, and had pleaded not guilty to the charges.
In opening statements, prosecutor Jayme Kimberly described how the 31-year-old victim was subjected to relentless torture for six weeks after she visited Lee’s residence in an attempt to get heroin.
After Lee injected her, Kimberly said, the victim was tied to a bed, sexually assaulted and beaten.
“They beat her to the point where her eyes were swollen shut,” Kimberly said.
The victim told the court she was given little food, and she feared she would never leave the residence.
The court also heard testimony from Irish Boyce, 46, the girlfriend of Lee. Boyce pleaded guilty to assault last year as part of an agreement with prosecutors. In exchange for her testimony against Lee, prosecutors agreed to recommend a reduced prison sentence.
Authorities said Boyce was present and participated in some the attacks. She said she was ordered to do so by Lee and feared violence from him if she did not. She eventually alerted police when an officer knocked on the door.
Mark Brownlee, Lee’s attorney, disputed the victim’s account, noting she was recently released from jail and her memory of what occurred may have been affected by drugs and other disorders.
Lee’s sentencing is scheduled for next week.
Information from: Statesman Journal, http://www.statesmanjournal.com