State, Defense Rest In Fajardo Trial

Both sides in the Werner Fajardo rape trial in Huron have rested. Prosecutors called three witnesses Friday morning. A 17-year-old female testified that she saw Fajardo laying on an air mattress on the floor of the El Cuervo bar with his hands under the bra and panties of a female, who was 18 at the time. That female testified Thursday she didn’t recall if Fajardo touched her inappropriately when she was drunk at the bar. Dr. Nancy Free, a board certified pediatrician at Child’s Voice in Sioux Falls. told jurors that female sexual assault injuries heal quickly and may not be seen if the victim is not seen by a doctor within 72 hours of an assault.  Defense attorney Carmen Means pointed out for the jury that Free never saw actual signs that an assault ever took place.  After prosecutors rested. Means moved for dismissal of all charges but specifically a charge of sexual exploitation of a minor. That charge was brought because of evidence that Fajardo made two of the females who testified during the trial kiss.  Beadle County States Attorney Mike Moore argued that constituted obscene. Judge Jon Erickson ruled a kiss was not obscene. Nothing more than a kiss took place between the two. The remaining 14 counts against Fajardo will stand. Means called Fajardo’s brother Elmer for brief testimony on booths in the El Cuervo and Bo Burkel, who testified that one of the victims told him she made up the story to get attention. Lawyers will have 45 minutes each for closing arguments before the case goes to the jury.

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