Dana Adams, 33, has pleaded not guilty to the charges and Wednesday she got the chance to tell her side to the Richmond County Superior Court jury. She said she didn’t do any of the crimes she is accused of committing.
Adams was the last witness in the case that began Monday. The jury deliberated about 90 minutes Wednesday before sending the judge a note indicating they wanted to stop for the night.
Adams testified that the allegations against her were made up in revenge because she reported to the sheriff’s department that the boyfriend of the alleged victim’s mother stole her debit card during a January 2012 visit to her home. The man threatened her, Adams testified, that if he was arrested the boy would say she molested him.
She had allowed the boy to spend weekends at her home occasionally so he could spend time with a young male relative of hers, Adams testified. The last time the alleged victim stayed, in the fall of 2011, nothing unusual happened, she said. The boys played video games, ate pizza and socialized with a couple of friends and a neighbor.
The alleged victim testified earlier in the week that Adams loaned him money to buy marijuana and drove him to meet the person who had the drugs. He testified she later smoked the marijuana with the boys, and had sex with him several times that weekend.
In their closing arguments to the jury Wednesday, both attorneys said the case came down to the credibility of the accused and her alleged victim.
Adams’ attorney, Mike Arrington of the public defender’s office, argued that the teen had been surrounded by a criminal element at the time of the allegations. Lying wasn’t a problem for a child who admitted to smoking marijuana almost daily after starting at the age of 12. The teen’s lack of details, his inability to remember details – including the date he said the sex occurred – should also render him unbelievable, Arrington contended.
Assistant District Attorney Melissa Marks countered that memory is not another word for credibility. She argued to the jury that Adams’ profusion of details was a story concocted to mesh with the details she heard from other witnesses who testified first.
Her denial that she aided the alleged victim in obtaining marijuana and smoking with the boy couldn’t be supported, Marks said, adding that the alleged victim and other witnesses testified at trial that she did do that.