◼ Rape trial for stepfather goes to jury for deliberation
The trial of a stepfather who allegedly molested his own stepdaughters went to the jury for deliberations Thursday.
Humboldt County District Attorney Paul Gallegos confirmed deliberations have started in the trial of Paul Alan Jasnosz, 43.
Jasnosz is facing 45 counts, including 31 counts of forcible rape, making criminal threats and false imprisonment.
The trial started early last month.
Gallegos said in a Thursday interview that he appreciated the fact that the victims testified.
”We know it's really tough,” Gallegos said.
According to a complaint issued by the Humboldt County District Attorney's Office, the two stepdaughters, now in their 20s, were 6 and 7 years old when the molestation allegedly began.
Jasnosz was arrested Oct. 5, 2008. Jury continues deliberation today.
Update: ◼ Jasnosz convicted of 31 rape counts
The man accused of repeatedly raping his stepdaughters and wife was found guilty of 44 felony counts Friday.
A five-woman, seven-man jury returned the verdicts against Paul Alan Jasnosz after two days of deliberating. Each verdict was read individually, and all but one came back as a felony. The 45th count was reduced to a count of misdemeanor battery.
Jasnosz was found guilty of 31 counts of forcible rape, six counts of oral copulation of a minor, two counts of assault with a firearm, two counts of making criminal threats with the use of a firearm, two counts of false imprisonment with use of a firearm and one count of being a felon in possession of a firearm.
The Humboldt County District Attorney's Office said he faces a minimum possible prison sentence of 380 years. He's scheduled to be sentenced Feb. 16.
Before the verdicts were read, Jasnosz began reading a statement, but Judge Marilyn Miles quickly ordered him to stop.
”I ask that you not interrupt, or I'll have you removed,” Miles said.
Jasnosz eventually stopped and the verdicts were then read, which took about an hour.
While guilty verdict after guilty verdict was being handed down, Jasnosz whispered to his attorney and scanned the crowd, stopping and slightly shaking his head while looking at one woman in particular.
After a few instances of this, Humboldt County Sheriff's Office Detective Troy Garey, who was an investigator in the case, stood up in the crowd to block the line of sight between Jasnosz and the woman.
”It's been a long trial,” said Jasnosz' attorney Jonathan McCrone after the hearing.
In the hallway afterward, District Attorney Paul Gallegos hugged the woman who had attracted Jasnosz' attention during the proceedings.
”The family are the true heroes,” he said later
Gallegos reiterated that all sentencing decisions are up to the judge.