Trooper Trevor Donah was arrested late Tuesday afternoon and charged with two counts of rape. The five-year veteran of the state police, who works at the Plattsburgh barracks, was immediately suspended without pay.
"Trooper Donah entered a plea of not guilty to the charges. He is presumed innocent by law and he should enjoy that perception in the community. This case should be tried in the court of law, we don't intend to try it in the court of public opinion," said Brian Barrett, Donah's lawyer.
According to court documents, Donah allegedly forced an adult woman to have sex with him inside a home in Beekmantown back in June 2010. The second attack, involving a different adult woman, allegedly happened last September inside an apartment in Plattsburgh. Investigators say both women were known to Donah and the incidents happened while he was off duty. They would not comment on how he met the women, whether it was through official work as a trooper or while he was off duty. One of the alleged attacks happened nearly three years ago, but police would not say how long Donah has been under investigation.
"At the end of the day we will prevail and his name will be cleared," Barrett said.
Even though the alleged rapes took place in Clinton County, Franklin County District Attorney Derek Champagne has been appointed to serve as a special prosecutor in the case due to a conflict of interest with the Clinton County District's Attorney's office. The specific reason for the conflict was not released.
Donah is being held at the Clinton County Jail for lack of $50,000 bail, but Barrett says arrangements are being made to post bail. Each charge carries up to 25 years in prison.
When asked if there could be more victims in the case, police will only say "the case is still under investigation." The State Police Internal Affairs Bureau is in charge of the investigation.
Prosecutors say pending police cases involving Trooper Donah will have to be reviewed on a case-by-case basis to decide which ones have independent evidence or other witnesses who can be used.
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