A former Oklahoma City police officer who was convicted of sexually assaulting eight women while on duty will spend the rest of his life behind bars.
The prosecutors said 29-year old Daniel Holtzclaw had an eye out for black women in low-income neighborhoods, checking them for drug paraphernalia or warrants before sexually assaulting them. He is half white and half Japanese and consistently denied the charges against him. Even his lawyers attempted to discredit his accusers by bringing up their past criminal activities. The case gained national attention when an all-white jury was selected.
— Leslie Rangel (@Leslie_KFOR) January 21, 2016
He was convicted of 18 sexual offenses, including four counts of first-degree rape, on December 10 after a six-week trial. On Thursday, Holtzclaw requested a new trial based on claims that DNA evidence had been omitted, but a judge denied the motion because there wasn’t enough evidence. Then the judge agreed with the jury’s recommendations and handed down a 263-year sentence, to be served consecutively, with credit for time served.
“I was 17 when this happened with Mr. Holtzclaw, and ever since this happened my life has been upside down,” one of the victims, identified as A., said during the sentencing period of the trial. “I can’t take the stress anymore. … I feel like I’m dying on the inside.” According to the Tulsa World, several of his victims have also filed civil lawsuits against him.