A jury on Thursday convicted a 61-year-old Juneau man on two of three felony sex crimes for reportedly performing sex acts on a younger family member while she was sleeping.
The 12 jurors deliberated for about seven hours over two days before finding Frank W. Lee guilty on two counts of second-degree sexual assault and not guilty on one count of first-degree sexual assault.
The audience in the courtroom could see Lee’s jaw drop and his head tilt to the side in an expression of disbelief as the jury foreperson announced the verdict a little after 2 p.m. in Juneau Superior Court. Lee and his attorney had argued the woman had fabricated the allegations.
The announcement prompted audible sobs of relief from the victim’s stepmother, who was sitting in the public seating area in the back of the courtroom. She rushed out the door to call her stepdaughter with the news.
“We were both crying,” the stepmother said in an interview after the verdict was read. “I could barely keep my composure I was so happy.”
Prosecutors say Lee engaged in oral and digital penetration of the victim as she was sleeping over at Lee’s apartment during his 60th birthday celebration last September. The woman testified at trial she awoke during the assault, which was reported to police shortly afterward.
The maximum possible penalty Lee could be facing for the two convictions is 99 years in prison. He will be sentenced in December.
This is a developing story. Check back for updates.
• Contact reporter Emily Russo Miller at 523-2263 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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