By PEGGY SINKOVICH
VINDICATOR TRUMBULL STAFF
WARREN -- The 11th District Court of Appeals has reversed one of two rape convictions of a former Niles man.
The appeals court ruled Monday that one of Jason Demetris' rape convictions be sent back to Trumbull County Common Pleas Court.
"Demetris argues that there is insufficient evidence for a conviction on the second count of rape. We agree," the judges' 17-page opinion states.
"The state failed to carry its burden to show that the alleged acts occurred more than once to support a conviction on a second count of rape."
Demetris, 27, was sentenced in March 2001 to 10 years to life in prison on each count by Judge Peter Kontos. The sentences were to run at the same time. Demetris is an inmate in Trumbull Correctional Institution.
Thomas Wrenn, an assistant Trumbull County prosecutor, said he is not sure what action his office will take; he had not had an opportunity Monday to review the decision.
Demetris' trial attorneys, Sam Bluedorn and Charles Ohlin, could not be reached.
During the trial, prosecutors said Demetris had intercourse with a 5-year-old girl he watched at his Niles home while the girl's mother worked.
Demetris was convicted Feb. 16, 2001, after a two-day trial. The jury deliberated two hours.