NEW BOSTON, Texas — A man who stalked a neighbor, broke into her house and raped her at gunpoint was found guilty Wednesday of two counts of aggravated sexual assault with a deadly weapon.
A jury of seven men and five women rejected LaDavion Deshaun White's claim that he had consensual sex on Aug. 16, 2017, with the young, single mother who had moved into a rental house just a few doors down from him on Arizona Drive in Wake Village, Texas.
The woman testified that she was awake, watching television alone in her living room when she felt a "presence" and looked up to see a gun pointing at her at about 3 a.m. Aug. 16, 2017.
"This is what every woman fears and what every man fears for his wife and daughters," First Assistant District Attorney Kelley Crisp told the jury in opening statements Wednesday morning.
The victim testified that when she first saw White, his face was covered with a red bandana and he wore gloves.
"He told me to stop screaming or he'd make my girl an orphan," the woman testified.
The victim testified that a day or two after she moved in, someone knocked on her door at approximately 2 a.m. The woman said she opened the door because she thought it was a friend of hers and was surprised to see a stranger she later realized was White, standing on her porch.
Days before the home invasion, the woman called police after noticing the glass in a window in her daughter's bedroom was broken. The woman said she suspected it was broken by debris as the night was a stormy one, but called police anyway.
Jonathan Matlock, who was working as a patrol officer for Nash, Texas, police in August 2017 and now works for a different law enforcement agency, testified that he responded to the woman's call for help regarding the broken window. Matlock and Nash Officer Jordan Looney found that not only had the window been broken, but several window screens had been removed. The officers said they found pry marks on a side door and a note.
The note began, "Dear beautiful," and went on to say the admirer had been watching her and wanted to "get to know" her. The letter asked the woman to leave her phone number for him.
The woman and her daughter spent that night at the victim's mother's house and did not return home until the window was repaired.
The victim testified that while she was being sexually assaulted in her home, White admitted to leaving her the note. The woman said White told her he had been hiding in her daughter's bedroom closet since 5 p.m. that day. The victim's daughter was spending the night with a family friend and was not home when the attack occurred.
The victim told the jury that after assaulting her in her bedroom, he ordered her back to her living room. There he scrolled through movie choices on Netflix, watched a film and sexually assaulted the woman twice more. The woman said White told her he would leave her home at 5 a.m. and had her set an alarm on her cell phone, which he had taken from her.
Before he left, White took a piece of paper from a notebook.
"I thought he was going to have me write a suicide note," the victim testified.
But White asked the woman to write down her phone number.
"I wrote down my actual number because I was afraid he'd call it and know if I gave him a fake one," the victim testified. "He wanted to know when I went to work and when I'd be home. He said he was coming back."
The victim said she was afraid to walk by a window in her home after White left for fear he would shoot her. She said she collected her purse and keys and drove with her lights off to her mother's house less than a mile away and called police.
Wake Village Detective Todd Aultman testified that the woman could not identify her attacker but was able to select his photo from a line-up. Aultman said White quickly became a suspect because he had been charged in a string of residential and car burglaries in the area ,which had been occurring for several months.
White didn't deny leaving his DNA on the woman and claimed she invited him to her home, under questioning by Texarkana lawyer Derric McFarland.
White claimed he'd been introduced to the victim by a cousin while visiting him at work and that the victim had given him her phone number. White denied assaulting the woman and claimed he would never engage in such conduct.
Under cross examination by Crisp, White denied writing the note officers found in the woman's door a few days before the assault. But handwriting on paperwork White completed while on juvenile probation appeared to match the writing on the note.
Former Juvenile Probation Officer Leah Miller testified that she was alerted by school officials when White was a juvenile that he had been telling other students he was going to rape someone and put them in the trunk of a car. Miller said she was able to go through White's cell phone and found searches for multiple types of sexually assaultive pornography including a search for "rape videos."
White denied ever owning or possessing a gun. Crisp asked White what he did with firearms he pleaded guilty to stealing from a car in November 2017. From November 2017 to a date in May 2018, White served time in a Texas prison as a condition of shock probation.
He was arrested on the sexual assault charges in August 2018 after DNA results linking him to the crime were received. DNA matching White's profile was found on multiple swabs collected during a sexual assault examination, an analyst testified under questioning from Assistant District Attorney Lauren Richards.
The jury was instructed by 202nd District Judge John Tidwell to return to court Thursday morning to hear testimony concerning the punishment White should receive. He faces five to 99 years or life in prison on each of two counts of aggravated sexual assault with a deadly weapon.