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Jurors Still Out

October 28, 2011

Staff photo/Mike Burkholder: Douglas Wine testifies during his rape trial on Thursday in Auglaize County Common Pleas Court.

WAPAKONETA — After close to eight hours of deliberations, jurors in the rape trial of a St. Marys optometrist were sent home.

Auglaize County Common Pleas Judge Frederick Pepple sent the jurors home for the night and ordered them to return at 9 a.m. today to continue deliberations in the trial of Douglas Wine. Jurors got the case at approximately 2:20 p.m. Thursday and continued deliberating until Pepple sent them home. Jurors sent Pepple a note initially indicating they were at an impasse, but a later note indicated they had reopened talks. It was at that point Pepple agreed to send the jurors home for the night.

Before handing them the case, Pepple informed the jurors they had four scenarios to discuss — an acquittal or a guilty verdict on either rape, sexual battery or gross sexual imposition. While Wine was indicted on the rape charge, Pepple ruled jurors could consider the two lesser included charges.

During testimony on Thursday, Wine took to the stand in his own defense. The optometrist recounted the events surrounding the alleged incident and his reaction to the hearing news of the allegations, which he repeatedly denied.

“That’s crazy, I would never do that,” Wine told his attorney Ritchey Hollenbaugh. “I didn’t do that.”

Wine also recounted his interview with a private investigator and the subsequent video that was played for the jurors. Wine noted he was distraught during the four-hour session.

“I was very confused with what the investigator had to say,” Wine said. “I was absolutely at my wits end as to what to do. My world was crashing.”

Wine also rejected the assertion that he was kneeling next to the woman as she laid in bed with one of his children the night of the alleged incident. Wine said the space between the bed and a large fish tank did not leave enough room for him to be kneeling beside the bed.

“There is absolutely no way I could be doing what (she) claims I was doing,” Wine said.

Wine called the entire episode bizarre and thought the woman’s story was unreasonable. Wine again reiterated his stance that he never was in that room that night and did not touch the woman.

Wine also recalled having multiple interactions with the woman during her subsequent visits to Wine’s home in the months following the alleged incident. During each visit, Wine said he did not notice anything out of the ordinary.

Wine also recounted an incident that took place before the events of Oct. 12 and 13, 2009, when he woke up in bed with the woman. Wine said he woke up in the middle of the night, realized he was laying in bed with the woman and exited the bedroom.

“I did discuss it with Clarinda the next morning,” Wine said of the incident. “I just told her a really weird thing happened ... she sort of looked at me strange and acknowledged it. She didn’t seem angry with me and thought it was weird.”

Wine also noted he was unsure if the woman ever knew he was in the bed with her.

Under cross examination, Auglaize County Prosecuting Attorney Ed Pierce asked about various dates the woman visited the Wines following the alleged incident. Wine testified he was unsure of the exact dates, but could recall the visits.

Before resting his case, Hollenbaugh again filed a motion for dismissal. Pepple again denied the motion.

If convicted on the rape count, Wine faces a maximum of 10 years in prison.

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