A Sussex County jury will resume deliberations Monday in the child sex abuse trial of Eric Bodenweiser, after failing to reach a verdict after two hours of discussion on Friday.

Bodenweiser, 55, of Georgetown, was indicted in October 2012, after an investigation of abuse claims by a man who now is 37. The accuser said Bodenweiser abused him between 1987 and 1990, starting when he was 10 and continuing until he was 13.

The jury started deliberations at 3:20 p.m. Friday after prosecutors and defense lawyers made closing statements on what was the 10th day of the trial.

Superior Court Judge E. Scott Bradley released the jurors for the weekend, cautioning them not to discuss the case with anyone or take in news reports about it.

The accuser testified that Bodenweiser forced him to perform oral sex dozens of times. Bodenweiser and the accuser’s family lived in homes in the same Frankford neighborhood at the time.

Bodenweiser faces 10 counts of unlawful sexual intercourse in the first degree and five charges of second-degree unlawful sexual contact. Bodenweiser has denied the charges.

In a closing statement Friday, Deputy Attorney General John Donahue said the accuser “chose to live with these memories by burying them.” He only came forward to accuse Bodenweiser because he saw him on the cusp of holding political office – a state Senate seat – after winning a Republican Party primary in the fall of 2012.

Eric Mooney, one of Bodenweiser’s lawyers, set up a large whiteboard before the jury for his closing argument.

One side was titled “Where is the proof?,” and it noted assertions the accuser made under oath about his own life – whether he graduated from high school, if he was now wanted by Florida authorities for violating terms of probation – that Mooney argued the defense had proved to be wrong.

The accuser had promised to support what he’d said with documentation, Mooney told the jury, but had not done so by trial’s end.

The other side of the board was titled “Admits to lying,” and it summarized points in the accuser’s testimony where he admitted to past untruths, including lying about ever talking with Bodenweiser’s estranged brother.

The accuser’s story about specific acts of abuse is “factually impossible,” Mooney argued. He illustrated how some details of the five alleged episodes changed dramatically from when the accuser first told police about them in a videotaped 2012 interview, when he recalled them in meetings with prosecutors just before trial, and how he described them on the stand.

“What one do they want you to pick?” Mooney asked the jury. “I guess they want you to pick the one that he said here in court.”

The defense has presented evidence showing that Bodenweiser didn’t own the type of car the accuser says he saw him tuning, and that Bodenweiser’s daughter, who the accuser said he befriended on a school bus, never attended the public schools the accuser went to.

Mooney repeated Bodenweiser‘s statement that he grudgingly let the boy watch pornographic movies at the boy’s insistence three to four times.

Prosecutors contend that story – a 32-year-old man letting a young teenager bully him into providing pornography – was nonsensical.

Deputy Attorney General David Hume IV reminded the jury of early trial testimony from Duane Smith, a pastor at Bodenweiser’s church. He testified that Bodenweiser admitted, during an early October 2012 talk in the pastor’s office, participating in oral sex with a young boy decades ago.

Bodenweiser, who took the stand in his own defense, said he was only referring to letting the boy watch adult videos.

Attorney Profiles

Eric G. Mooney, Esq.

Eric Mooney
  • DUI
  • DWI
  • Criminal defense

Telephone: (302) 856-3070
Fax: (302) 856-2177
Email: info@dedefense.com

Michael W. Andrew, Esq.

Michael Andrew
  • DUI
  • DWI
  • Pardons and Expungements

Telephone: (302) 856-3070
Fax: (302) 856-2177
Email: info@dedefense.com

Legislative Updates

The Delaware DUI law has recently undergone significant changes with the passage of House Bill HB 168, effective July 1, 2012. The changes include stiffer penalties for a 2nd offense DUI and Ignition Interlock Device requirements on a BAC of .15 or higher. You can read about the legislation here.

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