Bond set for Augusta lawyer, ex-wife on rape charges

Thursday, March 8, 2012 3:23 PM
Last updated Friday, March 9, 2012 1:40 AM
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A Superior Court judge set bond Thursday for an Augusta lawyer and his former wife who were indicted this week on rape charges.

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Joseph Neal Jr. turns to look at his family during Thursday's bond hearing. Neal and his ex-wife, Caroline, were indicted on rape charges this week. His bond was set at $50,000; hers was $30,000.  SARA CALDWELL/STAFF
SARA CALDWELL/STAFF
Joseph Neal Jr. turns to look at his family during Thursday's bond hearing. Neal and his ex-wife, Caroline, were indicted on rape charges this week. His bond was set at $50,000; hers was $30,000.

A bond of $50,000 was set for Joseph Neal Jr., while his Caroline Neal was given a $30,000 bond by Richmond County Superior Court Judge James Blanchard Jr. He also ordered them to avoid any contact with the victim and refrain from using social network sites on the Internet.

The Neals were indicted Tuesday on charges of rape and providing alcohol to a person younger than 21 in connection with a Dec. 16 incident at their Kings Way home.

Authorities allege the Neals had “carnal knowledge” of an 18-year-old woman against her will after plying her with alcohol and marijuana.

The lawyer, 43, who was arrested Tuesday, entered the courtroom in shackles and chains over a rumpled suit and tie. His ex-wife, 23, who returned to Augusta early Thursday from Greenville, S.C., was similarly shackled but dressed in the jumpsuit supplied to her by the Richmond County jail.

After a statement of charges, As­sistant District Attorney Parks White described the events of Dec. 16.

He said the 18-year-old woman, referred to in court by initials, was invited over that evening by Caroline Neal to drink wine at her home on Kings Way. When the young woman arrived, she was surprised to see that Joseph Neal also was there, White said.

White said both Neals supplied the teenager with more than four or five glasses of wine and then persuaded her to go to the master bedroom to smoke marijuana on the upstairs balcony.

According to the district attorney, the teen became increasingly intoxicated and sent garbled text messages to her boyfriend. At some point, Joseph Neal suggested that he and his wife engage in a “threesome” with the teenager, White said. At 10:33 p.m., the young woman’s boyfriend received a text message that read, according to White: “OMG … They are trying to make make me have a threesome. Help.”

White went on to describe an encounter in which the girl objected to unwanted sexual advances and acts performed by Joseph Neal, and resulted in the intoxicated 18-year-old fleeing the home.

After the teen made a report to the sheriff’s office Dec. 20, an investigator contacted Joseph Neal about the incident. White said the lawyer began deleting text messages from his phone and went over events with his then-wife to “get their story straight.”

On Dec. 21, the Neals began arguing about the encounter with the teen and the police investigation, White said. That argument turned physical, resulting in Caroline Neal being arrested and charged with simple battery, accused of scratching and punching her husband. They were married for about seven months before divorcing in February.

White did not ask for a specific bond for the state. Blanchard initially set a bond of $50,000 for each defendant but reduced Caroline Neal’s bond after a request from her attorney, Pete Theodocion, who said his client wasn’t able to sign a property bond.

Theodocion told Blanch­ard his client should not be considered a threat to the community or a flight risk.

“We found out of her inclusion in this indictment in the comments section of The (Augusta) Chronicle,” he said. “Within a day, she had hired an attorney and she had arranged to turn herself in at the jail, so she has shown that she can be responsible and meet her obligations.”

Sam Caldwell, of Colum­bia, told Blanchard he would ensure that his daughter would return to court for future proceedings.

“I promise I will have her here for every event you need her for,” Caldwell said.

Both defendants were released Thurs­day afternoon on bond from the Richmond County jail.

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Dixieman
14942
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Dixieman 03/08/12 - 05:18 pm
1
0
2 + 1 = ooooops!

2 + 1 = ooooops!

Riverman1
83696
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Riverman1 03/08/12 - 06:00 pm
1
0
Dixieman is having a better

Dixieman is having a better time with this than any of us. Heh.

IsAnyoneAlwaysRight
40
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IsAnyoneAlwaysRight 03/08/12 - 06:24 pm
1
0
$50K to $30k...hmmm.....thats

$50K to $30k...hmmm.....thats their age difference......or does it mean a man is worth more than a woman...oops two women lol.

Dixieman
14942
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Dixieman 03/08/12 - 09:23 pm
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His law license is gone if he

His law license is gone if he is convicted of this.

realitycheck09
307
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realitycheck09 03/08/12 - 09:24 pm
4
4
If this had been Tron and

If this had been Tron and Shameka Jackson - even with no criminal records - the Judge would not have given them bond. Just saying.

Dixieman
14942
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Dixieman 03/08/12 - 09:31 pm
0
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This is odd...he is local and

This is odd...he is local and she lives out of state so why should she get a lower bond? Unless there was evidence at the hearing that she was somehow less culpable than he was. Hmmmmmmm.

raul
4845
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raul 03/08/12 - 10:20 pm
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@Dixieman. "Blanchard

@Dixieman. "Blanchard initially set a bond of $50,000 for each defendant, but reduced Caroline Neal’s bond after a request from her attorney, Pete Theodocion, who said that his client wasn’t able to sign a property bond".

boonerun
0
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boonerun 03/08/12 - 10:53 pm
0
2
Dixieman, she does not live

Dixieman, she does not live out of state

seenitB4
86932
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seenitB4 03/09/12 - 07:50 am
1
1
Evidently BONK...ya don't

Evidently BONK...ya don't know ya walking in the Bible Belt!
Walk carefully my friend.....:)

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/g/a/2012/03/06/bloomberg_ar...

Bonk
8
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Bonk 03/09/12 - 08:17 am
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thanks for the link seenitB4.

thanks for the link seenitB4. Whenever I see a christian and a mormon arguing about who believes in the correct God, it is like two trekkies arguing about who was better, Captain Kirk or Picard--interesting conversation, but pretty much meaningless when you get right down to it.

rickkilpatrick
0
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rickkilpatrick 03/09/12 - 08:26 am
2
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Bonk, they both worship the

Bonk, they both worship the same God...Just, one of them believes they can become a God.

Bonk
8
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Bonk 03/09/12 - 08:33 am
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1
seenitB4, all kidding a side.

seenitB4, all kidding a side. I recently retired and I am having a blast commenting on this paper's articles. I have lived here for over 20 years and I sincerely believe that some of the best people in the world live here. I will probably move back home out west in a little while to be closer to the grandkids but I will always cherish my memories of this crazy town. I was even thinking of running for city council and serving one term to try and clean up all the crazy laws that have to do with religion and then going on from there to Atlanta and telling all the male, anglo saxon, elderly legislators to stay the hell out of a woman's uterus. What do you think? :)

Bonk
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Bonk 03/09/12 - 08:35 am
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rickkilpatrick: so according

rickkilpatrick: so according to my unofficial scoring, it's mormons 1 christians 0 on the whole self esteem issue

seenitB4
86932
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seenitB4 03/09/12 - 08:39 am
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Bonk....If they don't get out

Bonk....If they don't get out of a womans uterus they will lose this election...imho..
Yes I have noticed you let the chips fall.....I like that on here....too many times people post what they "think" others want to hear...when all along most respect a different opinion...we need different opinions in life.
Maybe you should run for office....Augusta needs future thinking folks....REALLY!

Bonk
8
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Bonk 03/09/12 - 09:12 am
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SeenitB4: Don't be so

SeenitB4: Don't be so humble, your opinion is correct. I guess that people around here haven’t gotten the message that if Santorum is nominated, he will receive ZERO votes from independents. Honestly, it would be an Obama wet dream. I really hate to admit this, but each evening I watch “lawmakers” at 7 PM on PBS. Wednesday was crossover day. Do you want to know what my elected officials did to spend the most important day of the legislative session? They argued over whether or not state employees should have abortions on their health plan. I just may run on the platform of one term only and no contributions from anyone. The first time I ever voted was in 1976 and I voted republican (Gerald Ford). I have voted republican every time since then. I may vote for all democrats this time because the republicans have morphed into a party that I cannot be proud of. The other night I was watching this former kid actor, Kirk Cameron (remember “Growing Pains”?) talking about how two people who love each other and are committed to each other are evil and should not be allowed to get married. I was thinking that, way back in the day, Kirk and Leonardo DiCaprio held a coin toss on a break from the set on Growing Pains. The winner got to be a major superstar and the loser got to be an opinionated hate monger.

PghSteelersFan
140
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PghSteelersFan 03/09/12 - 09:34 am
2
0
A 'too close to a

A 'too close to a Church/School' law is not limited to the 'Bible Belt'. Most cities and States have a '300 to 350 ft from Churches/Schools' law on the books and they enforce it. The fact that you were able to even get a beer shows a more 'liberal' slant on the law. Most places you can't even get a 'dispenser license' for any type of alcohol if the place you want it is within the 300/350 ft space.

bjphysics
36
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bjphysics 03/09/12 - 09:40 am
4
0
Perfectly good story about

Perfectly good story about wild frolicking ruined by serious political posts.

Bonk
8
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Bonk 03/09/12 - 09:46 am
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pghsteelers fan: So whats

pghsteelers fan: So whats the difference, alcohol wise between beer and 1 oz of bourbon? Also, are you REALLY a steelers fan? Even with Roethlisberger (known rapist) Ward (voted dirtiest player -BY HIS PEERS! 2 years in a row) and Harrison (a thug who tries to end players careers and should be in jail) on your team?

Bonk
8
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Bonk 03/09/12 - 09:47 am
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bjphysics: apologies to you

bjphysics: apologies to you and Mr. Newton.

Bonk
8
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Bonk 03/09/12 - 09:54 am
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reallynow: GREAT post!

reallynow: GREAT post!

dawgtown
0
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dawgtown 03/09/12 - 09:55 am
1
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Bonk, don't leave us...you're

Bonk, don't leave us...you're my second best laugh of each morning, right after Bill Kirby"s joke!!!!

Bonk
8
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Bonk 03/09/12 - 09:57 am
1
1
I would LOVE to have judge

I would LOVE to have judge Blanchard as an attorney represent me on my next house closing. "Mr. Blanchard, I am unable to sign a mortgage agreement at this time--No problem, sir, I will cut $20,000 off the sales price"

Bonk
8
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Bonk 03/09/12 - 10:00 am
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dawgtown: I will never

dawgtown: I will never leave. Augusta is a great town with great people and God gave us the internet so I will always be plugged in.

PghSteelersFan
140
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PghSteelersFan 03/09/12 - 10:08 am
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0
Bonk: I should have been a

Bonk: I should have been a bit clearer. Those 300/350 ft laws in some cases say NO alcohol period. This includes beer/wine. I am from Augusta, went to William Robinson/Langford/ARC and it is interesting to know that Augusta now allows 'beer sales' within the footage limits.
As for the SteelersFan id -- I was a Guide on AOL for years and when AOL went to 16 letter screen names we were allowed to get them prior to the general membership. I was living in Pittsburgh at the time and so I grabbed the screen name. I now live in Santa Fe, NM where I have found a number of members of the 'Steeler Nation'.
As for the team, Roethlisberger has never been 'convicted' of anything. This is still America where one is innocent until proven guilty.
Hines Ward's (a UGA graduate and football team member) 'dirty tricks' are nothing compared to what the New Orleans Saints are accused of -- 'betting who could knock the QB out of the game'. James Harrison, who you say should be in jail, plays football almost the same as Ray Lewis of the Baltimore Ravens. Maybe every defensive player in the NFL should be in jail based on your statement. Football isn't ballet. It is a physical sport.

Bonk
8
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Bonk 03/09/12 - 11:03 am
2
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I had to modify my post--Mr.

I had to modify my post--Mr. Moores deleted my post (so much for freedom of the press I guess) Here is the post--he had me remove one letter: pghsteelersfan: Thanks for replying. We are two people from different parts
of the country and I look at you as a brother and both of us only wants the
best from this great nation that we live in. Your point #1-you are right-Big
Ben Rapistberger was never convicted of anything. ( I have read the police
report from Millegeville--the cop who wrote the report was hanging out with
Ben and the girls earlier in the evening and was getting his picture taken
with him--check it out online. Ben got a huge break in that small town cops
were involved. Even the most lenient of commissioners (Goodell) gave him a 4
game suspension 1/4 of the season. OJ was never convicted of murdering Nicole
and Ron either. Your points #2 and #3 are abolutely correct-spot on. Steelers
X-bags are just as big of X-bags as some other NFL players.

kiwiinamerica
942
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kiwiinamerica 03/09/12 - 11:43 am
0
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@Bonk I'm getting conflicting
Unpublished

@Bonk

I'm getting conflicting signals.

On the one hand, liberals are telling me to "stay the hell out of a woman's uterus". On the other hand, Obama and his liberal fellow travelers are telling me I have to pay for what goes on there through his HHS mandate on obligatory contraceptive and abortifacient health insurance coverage.

"Stay out of my uterus but pay for my fornication"...........yeah, maybe that's it.

ForeverFrog
1
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ForeverFrog 03/09/12 - 01:56 pm
0
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Back to the news article.

Back to the news article. Always heard: if you couldn't get a man, get two boys. Guess in this situation: if you can't get a woman, get two girls. lol

Bonk
8
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Bonk 03/10/12 - 04:42 am
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LOL ForeverFrog! Of course,

LOL ForeverFrog! Of course, unless you're a catholic priest.

seenitB4
86932
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seenitB4 03/10/12 - 05:22 am
1
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BONK....Please don't ever

BONK....Please don't ever leave us...& yes...always stay plugged in..
:):)...ya funny.

Bonk
8
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Bonk 03/10/12 - 06:43 am
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0
hey ya seenitB4, here is

hey ya seenitB4, here is where I'm moving back to--Sacramento, I actually voted for Jerry Brown in 1974 b/c I thought he was cool dating Linda Ronstadt==LOL But anyway check out this article from the Bee, Judges here in Augusta should try this:
http://www.sacbee.com/2012/03/10/4326185/students-see-firsthand-the-cost...

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