For Immediate Release - May 13, 2009

Commonwealth v. Jeremiah Wright Appeals Court Affirms Rape Conviction of East Orleans Man

Cape & Islands District Attorney Michael O'Keefe announced today that the Massachusetts Appeals Court affirmed the convictions of Jeremiah Wright, 34, of East Orleans. In August, 2007, Wright was convicted of one count of rape of a child and two counts of indecent assault and battery on a child under 14. The charges arose from Wright's sexual assaults of the victim while the victim was a foster child in his and his wife's care. The defendant was sentenced to 5 - 7 years in state prison for the rape conviction, and given concurrent sentences of 10 years' probation for the indecent assault and battery convictions, to be served on and after the rape conviction.

In his appeal the defendant claimed that his trial attorney had not been effective, because the trial attorney had not admitted his time cards into evidence. The defendant's strategy at trial had been to try to minimize the time that he would have had to be alone with the victim. In rejecting the defendant's claim, the Appeals Court noted that the time cards did not exonerate the defendant, nor were most of them relevant to the time period during which the molestation occurred.

The trial was handled by Assistant District Attorney Holly Harney. The appeal was handled by Assistant District Attorney Julia Holler.

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