South Dakota man found guilty of beating, raping and urinating on girlfriend
ABERDEEN, S.D. -- A man who verbally abused, kicked, urinated on, raped and beat his girlfriend on the Standing Rock Indian Reservation in late 2013 and early 2014 at his home in far north-central South Dakota has been found guilty by a federal j...
ABERDEEN, S.D. -- A man who verbally abused, kicked, urinated on, raped and beat his girlfriend on the Standing Rock Indian Reservation in late 2013 and early 2014 at his home in far north-central South Dakota has been found guilty by a federal jury in Aberdeen.
The jury deliberated almost three hours Thursday before finding Denny Johnson, 31, of Kenel, guilty of two counts of aggravated sexual abuse by force, assault with a dangerous weapon, domestic assault by a habitual offender and simple assault, according to court documents released by the U.S. attorney’s office.
He was cleared on a charge of kidnapping and three additional counts of aggravated sexual abuse. He was indicted on all the charges in June 2014. After several delays, the case finally went to trial this week.
According to testimony at trial, Johnson had been in a tumultuous and violent relationship with the victim for about 14 years when the most extreme physical and emotional abuse flared up during the holidays and in the days following.
One night, after picking her up from work he began yelling at her about 12:30 a.m. because he said he had been watching her at work and saw her interacting with a co-worker.
The victim began to gather her belongings to leave, but that’s when the nightmare began.
As he headed out the door, Johnson slammed the door shut and jerked her to the floor and assaulted her, said the testimony.
As she was lying on the floor he repeatedly kicked her on the small of her back, knowing she had been previously injured there.
She again tried to escape, but Johnson chased her in his bedroom with a large Army knife he had grabbed. He began throwing household items at her, striking her on the forehead.
He took her suitcase and started ripping her clothing with a knife.
The victim tried to escape out a window, she testified, but was so nervous she couldn’t unlock the window.
She curled into a fetal position, while Johnson threatened her with the knife again, the testimony said.
He then cut off her clothes, including her undergarments, with the knife and threw her to the ground, then threw the knife at her sticking it in the floor beside her.
Johnson then told her to kill herself, the testimony said, but she said she had her children to live for and wouldn’t do it.
As she was trying to crawl away, he kicked and urinated on her, the telling her she stunk and ordered her to get in the shower. He turned on the cold water only, she testified, and poured shampoo, soap, Mr. Clean and Clorox on her head and face.
Testimony said the victim was again pleading for Johnson to stop, but he grabbed a mop bucket with dirty water and dumped that on her, too.
He then ordered her to the bedroom, where he raped her in several ways, the testimony said. During the rape, he hit her in the face and held a knife to her throat.
The case was investigated by the FBI and the Bureau of Indian Affairs-Standing Rock Agency.
A presentence investigation was ordered, with sentencing set for Aug. 15. He faces possible life in prison and a $1 million fine.
Johnson remains in custody.