Day 2 of trial calls witnesses


XENIA — Testimony in a Fairborn rape case resumed March 7 the same way it ended the night before: With a back-and-forth between defense attorney Adrian King and the 17-year-old alleged victim leading to an onset of tears and a brief break.

The victim, also the state’s first witness in the rape case against Chance Putnam and Tahryn Bailey, eventually was able to step down as eight others took the stand.

But not before the defense attorneys finished their cross-examination.

King began, gradually steering the topic of conversation toward the victim’s memory of the alleged events that occurred April 8-9, 2016.

“If you were truly impaired, how would you know if you didn’t remember something?” King asked. “If you didn’t remember it, you have nothing to go on.”

The victim responded, “I remember that I didn’t want what happened to happen to me.”

When prompted, she agreed that she remembered some parts of the night but not others.

“You don’t have sufficient memory … so you can’t say you didn’t say ‘yes’ at those parts,” King continued.

“I didn’t say ‘yes’ … I didn’t say ‘yes’ … ” the victim responded — in between gasps — to the last trailing questions.

Assistant Prosecutor Cheri Stout redirected testimony, asking the victim if she had been able to say anything during the alleged events. The victim proceeded to testify that she physically could not talk or move while the alleged assault was happening.

Testimony continued as a friend of the victim, two Fairborn Police Department officers, and a sexual assault nurse examiner (SANE) each testified individually to the victim’s demeanor in the hours following the alleged events. They told the jury she was in shock, traumatized, withdrawn, and tearful.

Defense rebutted, and some witnesses followed, saying she was at first uncooperative with the police, who had been called on her behalf without her knowledge.

The SANE also testified to the injuries she recorded during the victim’s exam, using the state’s exhibits — her own professional report, photos and diagrams.

“I had not seen at this point of doing exams in my career the injuries that were noted in the patient … ” she said.

Three forensic experts also took the witness stand.

Devonie Herdeman, a forensic scientist for the Bureau of Criminal Investigation (BCI), testified her findings regarding DNA analysis on pieces of evidence in this case, including the victim’s “rape kit” and articles of her clothing.

According to Herdeman, results for the “rape kit” items showed a mixture of DNA on each, including the victim’s and another male’s which was neither Putnam’s nor Bailey’s.

DNA results for the articles of clothing showed the victim was a major contributor of DNA on each, while some included an additional male not being tried in this case, and others included “additional data.” The conclusions labeled Putnam as “excluded” from each mixture. Bailey was also “excluded” from each but one, which was labeled “inconclusive” for his DNA.

Herdeman also testified to a “masking effect” that can happen.

“Ten times more of one person’s DNA can mask another person’s DNA,” she said as Stout questioned her.

The day’s proceedings ended as the defense called one witness to the stand and then rested its case.

Trial will continue with closing arguments from both parties beginning 8:30 a.m. March 8 in Greene County Common Pleas Court. Jury instructions and deliberation are expected to follow.

By Anna Bolton

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Reach Anna Bolton at 937-502-4498.

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