Trial set for youth in Carroll rape case

Ex-Key High wrestler, 17, accused of assaulting two women, two teens

November 29, 2001|By Sheridan Lyons | Sheridan Lyons,SUN STAFF

A Carroll County District Court judge found sufficient evidence yesterday for the trial of a Taneytown-area youth who is accused of raping four young friends and acquaintances in the past year, three of them at parties where alcohol was used.

Nathaniel Jared Yinger, 17, of the 2800 block Basehore's Mill Road has been charged as an adult with multiple counts, including rape, sexual assault and assault, all in the second degree, and sodomy, involving two 18-year-old women and two 16-year-old girls since December. He was freed Nov. 2 on $50,000 bail and placed on home detention in the custody of his parents.

Dressed in a black shirt and a tie, Yinger sat quietly beside defense attorney Fred S. Hecker during a preliminary hearing in court yesterday. Hecker questioned -- sometimes graphically -- whether the alleged acts met the law's definitions. He also asked about the women's behavior -- injuries, cries for help, ripped clothing -- trying to show insufficient proof of force to support the charges.

Preliminary hearings are held to determine whether sufficient evidence exists for the accused to stand trial.

Trooper Charlene Yinger of the Child Abuse and Sexual Assault unit, who is not related to the defendant, was the only witness called by Assistant State's Attorney Natasha M. Byus for the hearing before Judge Marc G. Rasinsky.

The case began Sept. 29, when an 18-year-old woman went to Carroll County General Hospital seeking treatment as a possible rape victim and the hospital notified police. The woman told Trooper Yinger she became ill from drinking beer and malt beverages and passed out on a couch at a party near Taneytown. According to Trooper Yinger's testimony yesterday and court documents, the woman said she was sexually assaulted about 3 a.m. that day. The woman fell asleep again.

"She said she really wasn't aware of what was going on. She said she was drunk," Trooper Yinger said, after a detailed description of the events of that morning. "There were other teen-aged kids in the house, in various rooms of the house, but they were all asleep."

Trooper Yinger's interview with that woman led to a second woman, who was at the hospital with the first woman, the trooper said. The second woman said Yinger had attacked her in April at a party in New Windsor, Trooper Yinger said, where she was drunk from consuming shots of vodka. Trooper Yinger said the second woman told her about a 16-year-old allegedly attacked in February at a friend's house near Taneytown that also involved drinking, and in which three friends intervened and chased Yinger from the party.

In the fourth case, a 16-year-old Westminster girl who was not drinking told police she let the defendant in her home, where they played pool and he tried to kiss her in December. The girl said she was carried to a downstairs bedroom and raped, Trooper Yinger testified.

The female teens are small, she said, and were intimidated by Yinger, who was a friend of most of them and a wrestler for Francis Scott Key High School before he withdrew as the case began.

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