Jury selection began this week for the trial of Darren Thomas, who was convicted last year of raping and impregnating an autistic woman then under the care of the Devereux Foundation and is now facing perjury charges. While perjury charges are extremely rare, prosecuting attorney Joyce Dudley is claiming that Thomas knowingly lied on the witness stand when he charged that sheriffs deputies stole his coffee cup after meeting with him at a Goleta Starbucks. DNA from saliva found on the coffee cup was pivotal in convicting Thomas of rape. His attorney sought to quash the coffee cup evidence on the grounds that deputies improperly confiscated it. The two deputies testified that they retrieved the cup from the trash after Thomas, a Devereux employee at the time of the assault, deposited it there. The prosecutor is basing her case on the testimony of witness who claimed to have been at Starbucks at the time Thomas met with sheriffs investigators. The witness’s recollection of events contradicts Thomas’s and supports the two deputies.


Please note this login is to submit events or press releases. Use this page here to login for your Independent subscription

Not a member? Sign up here.