Former Marine given nine years in rapes of two Okinawa women
Stars and Stripes March 26, 2006
NAHA, Okinawa — Just two days after turning 36, Dag Allen Thompson was sentenced to nine years in a Japanese prison Friday for raping two Okinawa women.
Wearing a white shirt, striped tie, charcoal-gray trousers and brown plastic prison-issue slippers, he showed no emotion as he faced a three-judge panel in Naha District Court.
He remained impassive as he sat between two guards and listened to Chief Judge Nobuyuki Yokota spend two hours reading details of the court’s decision.
Thompson, formerly a Marine and a salesman for Exchange New Car Sales on Kadena Air Base, was found guilty of raping a 21-year-old Chatan woman in August 2004 and a 27-year-old Naha woman in June 1998. He also was found guilty of breaking into their homes to commit the rapes.
Calling both incidents “atrocious and vicious crimes,” Yokota said Thompson had shown no remorse. The judge said the women’s “dignity was trampled and the amount of terror, fear and humiliation they suffered is beyond imagination.
“Seven years after the Naha incident, the victim still has occasional nightmares of being attacked, and the victim in the Chatan case cannot sleep and is on medication for stress,” he said.
Thompson pleaded not guilty to both crimes. He said his statements to the prosecutor and an arraigning judge after his October 2004 arrest in the Chatan case were untrue, made under duress. He’d told them he barged into the woman’s home while drunk but didn’t rape her, just ejaculated on her sheets.
After he fled when she screamed, the woman took the semen-stained portions of the sheets to a police station. Thompson was identified after police determined he’d parked his car near the woman’s house while out drinking with a friend that night.
The woman identified him when he was questioned at the police station in October.
Thompson was charged with the Naha rape after DNA from his saliva was linked to DNA from the unsolved 1998 case.
An expert forensic scientist who did separate tests of the DNA in both cases testified that the chance someone else could have the same DNA profile was one in 1.482 billion.
Yokota ruled that the DNA evidence in both cases was handled properly and proved conclusively that Thompson was guilty of both rapes. He dismissed all defense arguments in the case, including attorney Toshimitsu Takaesu’s assertion that the Chatan victim actually was standing in for her sister to avoid the sister’s embarrassment from reporting a rape.
Throughout Friday’s session, Thompson’s Okinawan wife sat alone in the back row of the courtroom’s spectator’s section. He did not acknowledge her presence.
Afterward, she had no comment on the verdict and what lay ahead for her and their three children. They live in Naha.
The case added to the list of crimes cited by opponents of the U.S. military presence on Okinawa as reasons to close the bases. As the trial began, crowds packed the courtroom. But the final hearing Friday, more than a year later, drew only a dozen spectators including reporters.
Thompson has two weeks to appeal the verdict and sentence.
Chiyomi Sumida contributed to this report.