Man Found Guilty Of Raping Girl - New Hampshire News Story - WMUR New Hampshire

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Man Found Guilty Of Raping Girl
Woman Says Man Raped Her When She Was 15
POSTED: 4:23 pm EDT May 27, 2011 UPDATED: 12:27 am EDT May 28, 2011

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CONCORD, N.H. -- Jurors have found a Gilford man guilty of raping a fellow church member when she was 15 years old.
Ernest Willis, 52, was charged with sexually assaulting Tina Anderson in 1997. Anderson said she was raped twice and became pregnant as a result. Willis admitted having sex with her once but said that was the only time. He pleaded guilty to one charge because he said he knew she was underage, but he said she consented to having sex with him. Live Live Live Live Live Updates Day Updates Day Updates Day Updates Day Updates Day 1: Willis Trial 2: Willis Trial 3: Willis Trial 4: Willis Trial 5: Willis Trial
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The jury ruled that Willis forcibly raped Anderson, convicting him of two counts of aggravated felonious sexual assault and two counts of felonious sexual assault. He was taken from the courtroom in handcuffs after the verdict was read. Willis will remain in the Merrimack County Jail as he awaits sentencing. He faces a maximum sentence of more than 50 years in prison. Anderson, now 29, allowed her face to be shown and name to be used to better help people understand her story. She said that the church she attended at the time, Concord's Trinity Baptist Church, made her apologize to the congregation. Willis also[6/28/2011 4:00:28 AM]

Man Found Guilty Of Raping Girl - New Hampshire News Story - WMUR New Hampshire

apologized for being unfaithful. Anderson was then sent to a foster home in Colorado, where she had the baby and gave it up for adoption. "Tina Anderson is a hero today because of her incredible courage," said Anderson's spokeswoman, Jocelyn Zichterman. Zichterman said supporters who said they are survivors of church abuse also came from across the country for the trial. "Today, those victims feel a sense of justice, justice they were never able to see because their crimes were also covered," Zichterman said. "We hope now that Tina can move on with her life and find a sense of peace." "I felt like if she had the courage to stand and tell her story, then I needed to be here to stand behind her," said Melanie Blair, of Cleveland, Ohio. Previous Stories: May 26, 2011: Jury Begins Deliberating In Willis Rape Trial May 26, 2011: Man Accused Of Raping Teen Testifies In Trial May 25, 2011: Pastor Contradicts Man's Claim In Rape Trial May 23, 2011: Alleged Victim Testifies In Sexual Assault Trial June 16, 2010: Man Arraigned On Charges Of Raping 15-Year-Old

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