Gunnery sergeant is second defendant convicted of lesser charges; two trials remain
Stars and Stripes May 22, 2008
MARINE CORPS AIR STATION IWAKUNI, Japan - Prosecutors dropped charges of rape and kidnapping against an Iwakuni gunnery sergeant, but he will spend 18 months in prison for other charges and get a bad-conduct discharge from the Marine Corps.
Gunnery Sgt. Jarvis Raynor, 34, pleaded guilty to adultery, indecent acts, fraternizing, stealing money and breaking liberty rules during a court-martial Tuesday.
A Hiroshima woman said Raynor and three other Iwakuni Marines kidnapped her from a nightclub and took turns raping her in a deserted parking lot Oct. 14.
Raynor, a 17-year Marine and father of five, had faced more than 21 years in prison.
Lance Cpl. Larry Dean, 20, was sentenced to no more than one year in prison and a dishonorable discharge for drinking alcohol underage, fraternizing, breaking liberty policy and wrongful sexual contact during a court-martial early this month. He was acquitted of rape and kidnapping.
Gunnery Sgt. Carl Anderson, 39, and Sgt. Lanaeus Braswell, 25, will be tried for the alleged rape and related charges next month.
The four men went out to a club district in Hiroshima in October to celebrate Anderson’s retirement.
Raynor admitted allowing the two junior Marines to drink alcohol in his car and to break liberty restrictions by staying off base all night.
The four Marines also performed indecent acts with the Japanese woman in a parking lot in plain view of each other and the public, he said.
Raynor said he committed adultery later that night when he went to his mistress’ apartment in Hiroshima and had sex with her.
He said he regretted allowing the night in Hiroshima to get out of control and regretted socializing with junior Marines, though he said the alleged victim should "step up to the plate" and accept some responsibility for the sexual encounter.
Raynor’s wife, Gunnery Sgt. Shalanda Raynor, testified that she gave birth to twin daughters in January.
"It hurts because we have to be embarrassed and have it rehashed over and over. It’s like picking a wound and never having it heal," Shalanda Raynor said. "The only way we can have closure and bring our family back together is to have [my husband] come back home."
The Marine Corps did not grant Raynor the right to be at his children’s birth during his confinement, she said.
"I felt worthless, I felt helpless, I felt useless," Raynor said. "It is the most horrible, embarrassing and, God willing, the roughest time of my whole life."
The alleged victim, who was a 19-year-old minor at the time, said she has had trouble sleeping, eating and working since the incident.
"There have been many days I can’t sleep even with sleeping pills," she said through an interpreter.
The Marines had sex with the woman six times in the parking lot and she said it was never consensual.
"I was raped," she said during her third court appearance since March.