A jury on Friday convicted a Paulsboro man in the violent sexual assault of his former girlfriend.
The jury in Woodbury found David A. Richardson, 39, of the 200 block of Nassau Avenue, guilty of a first-degree count of aggravated sexual assault; aggravated sexual assault during commission of a burglary; burglary while armed with a deadly weapon; false imprisonment; and theft.
The assault took place in the victim's Woodbury home on June 22, 2010. She testified that Richardson entered her apartment without permission and raped her twice while wielding a kitchen knife and punching her in the face.
Richardson also stole $1,700 from the woman, the single mother of a 13-year-old daughter, Assistant Gloucester County Prosecutor Staci Scheetz told the jury during the trial in state Superior Court. The money came from an insurance settlement, Scheetz said.
In a separate proceeding following the verdict, the jury also found Richardson guilty of violating a restraining order by appearing at the victim’s home.
The victim testified at trial that during the first sexual assault in her bedroom, she struggled so forcefully that she kicked a hold in the wall.
While Richardson's attorney contended he and the woman had consensual sex and there were merely slaps inflicted, Scheetz said, “is a hole kicked in the wall consistent with a woman who had consensual sex and was slapped around?”
The second attack occurred on a kitchen table as Richardson punched the victim in the face with a closed fist, according to trial testimony.
Richardson's attorney sought to minimize the woman’s injuries, noting there was no indication of bleeding. But Scheetz asked in her summation, “What is the purpose of punching someone in the head? Damaging your brain and causing serious injury.” She said emergency medical and hospital personnel observed facial swelling in the victim.
Superior Court Judge Walter L. Marshall Jr. revoked Richardson’s bail and set sentencing for March 22. Richardson has been jailed in default of bail since his arrest in Cape May County the same day as the offenses.
He faces 10 to 20 years in state prison on the first-degree charge.
“Domestic violence is a serious crime that we prosecute to the fullest extent of the law,” Scheetz said after the verdict. “I’m inspired by the courage of the women who come forward to prosecute these violent crimes.”