Thursday, August 13, 2009

Suburban Columbus, OH man pleas no contest to raping prostitute, attempt on another - sentenced to 2 decades

(Original Post 6-3-09)
Edwin Zimmerman, 46 of Madison County, OH, was convicted of rape and attempted rape after a plea deal in a case which involved 2 prostitutes. The prostitutes, based on the west side of Columbus, OH, were abducted for sexual purposes. Zimmerman claimed to he had sex with 800 prostitutes, and that he had been a john in that area since 2001.

One said she was grabbed by a man with a knife in a white van on Sullivant Avenue at 3 a.m. on Nov. 11, 2007, and forced to perform sex acts near Rickenbacker Airport, Assistant County Prosecutor Christopher Brown said. She was threatened with a butcher knife and left on a roadside.

A month later, a woman told London police that she willingly got into Zimmerman's van along W. Broad Street but immediately felt uncomfortable and asked to be dropped off. She was instead driven to Zimmerman's house in London. He demanded sex, but she sprayed a chemical irritant in his face and escaped.

A DNA sample from the first victim was a match for Zimmerman, who was arrested in July 2008 after a high-speed chase by police.

Franklin County Common Pleas Court Judge Richard A. Frye dropped abduction and kidnapping charges in exchange for the Alford (no contest) plea of the sexual charges. Zimmerman faces as much as 28 years in prison when sentenced July 2. Police have not found any other victims in this case so far.

(Update 8-13-09) Zimmerman tried to withdraw his guilty plea, but Franklin County Common Pleas Judge Richard Frye upheld his pleas, finding that the perp had adequate legal representation. Judge Frye sentenced Zimmerman to 20 years without parole, a $35,000 fine, and a lifetime as a sexual predator on Ohio's sex offender list.

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