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Brainerd man acquitted on sexual assault charges

The 20-year-old Brainerd man, who was charged June 26, 2012, for allegedly sexually assaulting a woman and attempting to strangle her at their Brainerd home, was found not guilty last month by a jury.

The verdict was read Jan. 18 for Joseph Alan Clark in Crow Wing County District Court. Clark was acquitted on all three charges of third-degree felony criminal sexual conduct, felony domestic assault by strangulation and a misdemeanor domestic assault-with the intention to inflict bodily harm on another.

According to the criminal complaint filed against Clark, the woman advised Brainerd police that Clark slapped her in the face repeatedly, made her punch herself with her own hands and he tied her wrists together with a jump rope. The woman went on to say that Clark had put a sock in her mouth, pinching her nose closed and applied pressure to her neck to prevent her from screaming.

During Clark’s statement, he said that they were arguing for several hours about their relationship and Clark said it was determined that they would no longer have a relationship and that he would move out. Clark said the woman became upset and hit him and scratched him several times. Clark said he pushed the woman and that she went flying because she is so small.

Clark said he then told the woman again that they would no longer have a relationship and that he would move out. Clark said that she became upset again and attacked him several more times. Clark said he then grabbed hold of the woman and held her down for 25-30 minutes. Clark said the infant was in the bedroom the entire time and that at no time did the woman come close to hitting her. Clark said he held the woman’s arms by her wrists up by her face because she was biting at him. Clark said he forced the woman’s hands into her face area in an attempt to get her to bite herself. Clark denied punching the woman and said that she may have hit herself when he was holding her wrists.

Denton (Denny) Newman Jr.
I've worked at the Brainerd Dispatch with various duties since Dec. 7, 1983. Starting off as an Ad Designer and currently Director of Audience Development. The Dispatch has been an interesting and challenging place to work. I'm fortunate to have made many friends, both co-workers and customers.
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