Judge to review confidential records in rape case

Durham trial set for Oct. 9

By Melanie Yingst - myingst@aimmediamidwest.com

MIAMI COUNTY — Miami County Common Pleas Court Judge Christopher Gee will issue a written decision regarding the release of confidential Miami County Children’s Services records in the case against a Union Township man accused of rape of a minor under the age of 13.

During a hearing on Friday, William “Bill” E. Durham, 49, of Union Township, appeared with his defense attorney Kevin Lennen on a motion to quash a subpoena for records regarding the victim’s reports with the county agency.

A four-day trial date has been set to begin Oct. 9. A final pre-trial conference is scheduled Monday, Sept. 24.

It is the second request from Lennen for an in-camera inspection of children’s services records in the case. An in-camera review is when the judge is the only person allowed to inspect confidential documents. Gee previously granted a portion of the agency’s records to be released to the defense in July. Lennen said the second request was due to evidence revealed from the first in-camera inspection, which yielded evidence pertinent to Durham’s case. The motion to release more records was filed Sept. 18 and requested for the second half of records to be released regarding the minor victim’s reports from November 2016 to the present day.

A representative from the Miami County Children’s Services Board said Lennen’s references to the possible evidence were based on “hoping” there was some level of evidence and “hoping history repeats itself.” The representative asked Gee to conduct an in-camera inspection of the agency’s records if necessary to determine the relevance of the records.

Prior to his decision, Judge Gee said he met with counsel prior to the hearing and expressed concern about the request made on Sept 18. Gee asked why Lennen waited two months to make the request due to the trial set to begin on Oct. 9. Lennen said he was reviewing records from the case and wanted the rest of the records reviewed. He stated he didn’t purposely request the records to cause a delay, but on a good faith basis.

In November 2016, Durham was arraigned on two counts of rape, one count of sexual imposition and two counts of illegal use of a minor in sexually oriented materials.

Durham was indicted on similar charges in June 2016, but the case was dismissed on Sept. 30 and refiled and presented to the grand jury.

Durham entered a plea of not guilty.

The indictment states the charges stem from a reported sexual assault involving a minor under age 13.

Durham was released on his own recognizance due to health conditions. Durham appeared in court wearing a medical mask over his face. Prior reports state Durham receives kidney dialysis almost daily and seeks medical treatment. Durham remains out on his own recognizance with orders to have no contact with the victim.

Durham trial set for Oct. 9

By Melanie Yingst