AKRON, Ohio — A 29-year-old man from Akron who raped a developmentally disabled woman he knew and beat her with a hammer and meat tenderizer was found guilty of multiple charges on Tuesday in the Summit County Court of Common Pleas.
The defendant, Stacey Roper, of Akron, was found guilty of six counts of rape, all first-degree felonies; two counts of kidnapping, both first-degree felonies; felonious assault, a second-degree felony, and corruption of another with drugs, also a second-degree felony.
The assault happened in February 2021. According to the Summit County Prosecutor's Office, the woman's coworker contacted Cuyahoga Falls police to have them make a welfare check. The woman had emailed work and said she needed help and that there was a man in her home who was being violent.
"The woman eventually told officers Roper repeatedly beat her. Investigators determined Roper struck her with a hammer and meat tenderizer. Roper also tied her up and forced her to ingest pills. When she passed out, Roper raped her," authorities said.
The woman required surgery for wounds she sustained in the attack, police said.
The prosecutor's office said that Roper represented himself at trial and, following the verdict, he spit in the face of an assistant prosecutor. More charges are pending, following that incident.
Roper is scheduled to be sentenced on Aug. 20.
Authorities said that Avery II, the Summit County Prosecutor's Office therapy dog, comforted the woman while she testified at trial. Avery is a 9-year-old Lab/retriever mix who provides emotional support to children who are victims of a crime.
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