The child also alleged that Towns molested, groped and attempted to rape her when she was younger in Philadelphia, the release said. She told her family about the incidents in June 2015, which led to Towns being arrested in Georgia and Pennsylvania.
His first trial was in September 2017 in Philadelphia, where a jury found him not guilty on all counts, the release said. The victim’s family was “devastated” by the decision and considered whether pursuing the case in Gwinnett was worth it, the DA’s office said.
They eventually decided to bring Towns to court, and the case went to trial Monday morning, the release said. Towns asked for a bench trial instead of a jury trial, meaning Judge George Hutchinson would solely decide the verdict.
Pretrial motions prevented Towns from mentioning his not guilty verdict to a jury, the release said.
The DA’s office said it believes Towns requested a bench trial since he hoped “Hutchinson’s awareness of the Philadelphia acquittal would factor into his decision regarding guilt or innocent for the Gwinnett crimes.”
Hutchinson found Towns guilty on both counts of child molestation and sentenced him to nine years in prison followed by 21 years on probation, the release said. He’ll also have to register as a sex offender upon his release.
While issuing Towns’ sentence, Hutchinson added that because he was acquitted of all crimes in Philadelphia, “it was important to not punish him for what it’s alleged that he did there but rather for his Gwinnett County crimes,” the release said.
In other news:
The former president injured his hip.