Dauphin man convicted of 2015 rape after victim’s ‘gut-wrenching’ testimony at trial
DAUPHIN COUNTY — A 60-year-old Dauphin man was convicted Thursday of rape, involuntary deviate sexual assault and other offenses after attacking a woman in his home in 2015.
Eliseo Navedo, 60, was also convicted of indecent assault, unlawful restraint, simple assault, and terroristic threats in the incident, which occurred on August 15, 2015, according to the Dauphin County District Attorney’s Office.
Navedo’s victim, a 29-year-old woman, ran naked from his home at about 12:30 a.m., crying and for help, according to testimony. Police were summoned to the scene after a neighbor let the victim inside and called 911.
A State Police investigation determined the woman met Navedo at a Philadelphia rehabilitation center two weeks earlier, and he offered her a place to stay while she battled her addiction to heroin.
Over the next two weeks, police determined, Navedo repeatedly threatened the woman, in addition to physically and sexually assaulting her. The victim testified she felt trapped with Navedo because she was still struggling with addiction and had nowhere else to go.
On August 14, according to testimony, Navedo became enraged with the victim when she ate takeout food in his car. He proceeded to punch the woman repeatedly and pulled her into his residence by her hair. He then raped the woman, who eventually managed to escape and ran from the home.
Troopers later found Navedo in his home, intoxicated and bleeding from his hands. A trail of blood led from the bed to the outdoor steps, and a large clump of hair that had been torn from the victim’s head was found in the home.
During trial, defense counsel argued that the victim and Navedo were in a consensual relationship and that the victim was lying about the sexual assault. He claimed that the incident was actually a fight between the two parties when he was trying to kick her out of his house.
But prosecutors pointed to “significant” inconsistent statements made by Navedo to police and other inconsistencies in his testimony, arguing that the victim’s testimony was credible.
Sentencing in the case is set for December 9, 2019, after a Megan’s Law report is completed by the Sexual Offender’s Board. Navedo is facing a mandatory minimum sentence of at least ten years because he is a Second-Strike Violent Offender, according to prosecutors. He was convicted in Berks County in 1984 of Third Degree Murder for the beating death of his girlfriend’s 18 month old child.
The jury in this case was not aware of the prior conviction due to evidentiary rules prohibiting its introduction into evidence.
After the verdict, Gettle stated: “The Commonwealth is relieved by the verdict of the jury. The victim in this case is a remarkable woman. She is truly a survivor. Rather, than letting this crime drag her further into addiction, she worked thru the trauma and is an inspiration to others who find themselves in the throes of addiction and domestic violence. If you find yourself needing assistance due to addiction or a domestic violence relationship, please know that help is available.”