HANFORD — A man charged with the 2015 rape of a woman in Lemoore was put on trial and sentenced Thursday to 62 years to life in prison, said a press release from the Kings County District Attorney’s Office.
A jury trial for Dejarrne “DJ” Smith started on Oct. 30 and finished on Nov. 6 when the jury rendered guilty verdicts on five felony crimes, including kidnapping for the purposes of rape; forcible rape; assault by means of force likely to produce great bodily injury; and two counts of criminal threats.
Smith was a stranger to the victim, whose name is being kept confidential.
Officials said evidence presented at trial consisted of the testimony of the victim, along with family and friends who spent time with her just before the rape. Officers and detectives from the Lemoore Police Department, who took statements from the victim, interviewed other witnesses and collected evidence from the scene of the rape.
During the trial, prosecutors also presented testimony from a prior female victim who was raped by the defendant in 2003. During the jury trial, the DA’s office said both rape victims were assisted by Kings County DA Victim Witness advocate, Georgina Maravilla.
Officials from the DA’s office said the jury trial lasted six days and was prosecuted by Managing Deputy District Attorney Kathy Ciuffini. The defendant was represented by Nicholas Capozzi.
Judge Robert Shane Burns presided over both the jury trial and sentencing hearing.
Authorities said the case was extensively investigated by the Detective Division of the Lemoore Police Department with lead Detective Albert Avelar, along with Senior District Attorney Investigator Nicky Lucero and District Attorney Investigator Daren Matteson from the Kings County District Attorney’s Office.