New trial yields same result for Kingman man
A Kingman man who won the right to a new trial after faulty instructions were given to the jury in his first child molestation case has been convicted again.
A Mohave Superior Court jury deliberated for around an hour last Friday before finding Joseph D. Whaley guilty of child molestation.
Whaley was found guilty by a jury in 2009 of molesting a 9-year-old girl.
That conviction was overturned last year when the Arizona Court of Appeals ruled that Mohave Superior Court Judge Rick Williams erred when he failed to give the jury the option of considering the lesser-included offense of attempted sexual conduct with a minor.
The jury in the first case found Whaley guilty of molestation, but acquitted him of sexual conduct with a minor and two counts of kidnapping involving the girl and her mother.
Those verdicts seemed to indicate that while the jury believed some sort of touching occurred, there had been no actual rape.
Prosecutor Megan McCoy said before the second trial started that she would avoid that confusion and charge Whaley with two counts of child molestation, so that if the second jury believed the same as the first, they could acquit on the molestation charge that a rape occurred, but could convict on the molestation charge that touching did occur.
Whaley was arrested in July 2008 after the mother of the 9-year-old girl told police she walked in on him abusing her daughter.
Both the girl and her mother testified at the trial.
A nurse trained in sexual assault testified that the girl's physical injuries were not consistent with her story.
According to court documents, Whaley told police he had ingested 20 beers "give or take," four Vicodin and "a few shots" of liquor and didn't remember much from the night.
Whaley received a 17-year sentence after his first trial.
That sentence was vacated when the new trial was ordered. He now faces between 10 to 24 years when sentenced Feb. 17.