FORT LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) – The verdict is in for a more than 30-year-old rape case.
The jury found Dobie Hunter guilty of raping a 16-year-old girl back in 1985, specifically 3 counts of sexual battery and 1 count kidnapping.
Hunter told the judge he is not the same man he was 30 years ago just a few hours after hearing the verdict. Hunter, who’s now an amputee in a wheelchair, denied all charges.
The jury started deliberating Wednesday and came back Thursday.
Over the three days of his trial, Hunter showed little reaction and chose not to testify.
Earlier this week, the alleged victim who is now 47-years-old faced Hunter saying she lives every day with the scar of that ordeal.
She said she wanted her cold case reopened three years ago when her daughter turned 16 – the same age she was when the assault happened.
The woman said she was walking near her home in Fort Lauderdale when she says Hunter dragged her into his car and then raped her repeatedly at knife-point. She says Hunter then took her to an apartment where he raped her again.
“He said for me to stop moving. I remember being punched in the face,” she recalled. “I remember there was a gold knife.”
The jury did not agree that Hunter had threatened the victim with a knife during the kidnapping and assault so he was found not guilty of any of the armed charges.
After the assault, the woman was treated and a rape kit processed, but there was never an arrest until the case was reopened.
That’s when BSO investigators did DNA testing and say they got a match with Hunter, who is a registered sex offender.
Hunter has spent 20 years in and out of prison for his sex offenses. He told the judge he has learned from his mistakes.
“I will never reverse it. I love people,” said Hunter.
While the judge said she believed Hunter had changed, he still has to answer for raping the 16-year-old, giving him 30 years in state prison.
“It’s very hard to stand up to that, to stand up for yourself because you have to believe in yourself first and that she did and she was very, very relieved that she was believed,” said Prosecutor Patyl Oflazian.