Jones Gets 12-35 Years for Rape

Joseph Jones will spend 12-35 years in prison for raping a mentally challenged woman in Warwood.

Ohio County Circuit Judge David Sims followed a recommendation of Assistant Ohio County Prosecutor Shawn Turak and probation officer William Ball by imposing consecutive sentencing for two counts of sexual assault, coupled with an earlier sentence on a similar charge.

When asked if he had anything to say, Jones told the judge he is going to jail for a long time for a crime he did not commit.

In August, Jones entered an Alford plea in which he did not admit to the crime but agreed the state had enough evidence to convict him.

Defense Attorney Randy Gossett argued with Ball’s pre-sentence investigation report notation that Jones expressed no remorse for what he had done.

“How can you be sorry for something you did not do?,” Gossett asked.

Turak told the court DNA evidence removes any doubt about guilt or the brutality of the crime.

“This crime goes beyond the brutality of a normal sexual assault,” she said.

In addition to the jail time, Jones will be on 50 years supervised probation after he is released.

In another Thursday hearing, Sims heard pre-trial motions from Assistant Ohio County Prosecutor Brian Ghaphery and defense attorney Kevin Neiswonger in the robbery case of Timothy Belle, of Toledo, Ohio.

Belle is accused of robbing an elderly man in Wheeling. The trial is schedule to begin on Nov.18.