Rape case set for trial

Dale William Baldwin

FRONT ROYAL – A 2 ½-year-old rape case was set Thursday for a trial in Warren County Çircuit Court at 9 a.m. April 29.

Judge Dennis L. Hupp agreed to requests from the prosecution and defense for a bench trial, which means the case would be decided by Hupp instead of a jury. Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney Bryan Layton and defense attorney Eric Wiseley estimated the trial will take a full day.

The defendant, Dale William Baldwin of Front Royal, has been accused of raping a woman at his residence on June 10, 2013.

Hupp set the trial date after ruling on two motions by Wiseley.

In one ruling, Hupp agreed to allow Wiseley to introduce evidence that he believes will show that the victim said she was raped by three men in three separate incidents within six months of each other.

Wiseley argued that the three incidents called into question the credibility of the victim’s accusation against Baldwin. Wiseley specifically asked Hupp to allow him to introduce evidence from the first of the three incidents, which allegedly occurred in December 2012.

“These three incidents are remarkably similar because they begin with her drinking and using drugs,” Wiseley told Hupp.

Wiseley said the victim’s encounter with Baldwin was the third of the three incidents that she reported.

Layton contended that Baldwin’s case differed from the other two incidents. Layton said the victim notified her boyfriend and asked him to rescue her from Baldwin. The victim’s boyfriend came to the residence and kicked down the door, Layton said.

“That is a fundamentally different circumstance than any of the other incidents,” Layton told Hupp.

In agreeing to allow evidence from the December 2012 incident, Hupp reversed an earlier ruling he made on the same issue. He did so after reconsidering case law cited by Wiseley.

Hupp rejected Wiseley’s second motion, which requested that several medical records from the victim be admitted into evidence.

Contact staff writer Joe Beck at 540-465-5137 ext. 142, or jbeck@nvdaily.com