Crime, Fire + Courts

Jury convicts man in Davis attempted rape case

By April 26, 2011

WOODLAND — A Yolo County jury Monday convicted a San Jose man for the May 2010 attempted rape of a woman who authorities say was attacked with a stun gun during the incident in her K Street apartment.

The jury found Hoang Cong Nguyen, 27, guilty of assault with intent to commit rape, burglary, attempted rape, false imprisonment and assault with a deadly weapon with an enhancement for causing great bodily injury, according to a news release from the Yolo County District Attorney’s Office.

Nguyen faces life in prison at his June 22 sentencing in Yolo Superior Court.

Authorities described Nguyen as the ex-boyfriend of the victim’s sister. Both women were UC Davis students when Nguyen came to Davis for a visit on May 6, 2010.

On the way, Nguyen — who prosecutors say had developed an infatuation with the 18-year-old victim — purchased a 200k-volt stun gun in San Francisco, the news release said.

The following day, after the sister left the apartment to attend class, Nguyen reportedly assaulted the victim as she studied anD attempted to incapacitate her with the stun gun, prosecutors said.

“The victim fought back by grabbing a kitchen knife that had been left on a nearby table” and stabbed Nguyen three times in the leg, the news release said. But the assault continued, and the victim pretended to be unconscious with the hope the attack would end.

Prosecutors said the victim then saw Nguyen removing his clothing and successfully fled the apartment. She later was treated for electrical burns and an incision caused by the stun gun assault.

Davis police arrested Nguyen near the crime scene.

“The viciousness and callousness of this attack on the victim are undeniable. It will leave lasting affects on her,” said Deputy District Attorney Deanna Hays, who prosecuted the case. “But it is a true tribute to her strength and the strength of those that support her that she is planning a return to college this coming fall to continue her education.”

Nguyen’s attorney, Jai Gohel, described his client as “a good person who did a bad thing.” He said Nguyen cooperated with authorities and tried to take responsibility for his actions.

“He has achieved much in his life as an immigrant, student and Navy veteran. Nothing in his past could have predicted this most unfortunate incident,” Gohel said in an email to The Enterprise. “He is extremely remorseful for the effect that his conduct has had on the victim and her family.”

Judge Timothy Fall will preside over Nguyen’s sentencing.

— Reach Lauren Keene at [email protected] or (530) 747-8048. Follow her at www.twitter.com/laurenkeene

Lauren Keene

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