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Trial begins for rape suspect in Boone County

The first day of a trial for a man accused of rape consisted of jury selection and opening statements. The trial is expected to last all week.

JoAnthony Johnson is suspected of raping and drugging several women in 2015.

He allegedly recorded some of those assaults on his cellphone, which will be shown to the jury sometime this week.

Prosecuting Attorney Dan Knight is trying this case and spent an hour on his opening statement that detailed several instances of alleged rape and druggings by Johnson on different women in Columbia.

Knight said the evidence this week will show that Johnson knowingly drugged and raped the women.

He mentioned the different hallucinogenic drugs that will be discussed including mushrooms and a form of highly concentrated marijuana called dabs.

Johnson’s attorney Sarah Aplin claimed in her opening statement that this week, the evidence will show that the women were not drugged by Johnson because the effects of those drugs were not the ones described by the women to police.

Aplin said she will also show police bias in the questioning of some of the victims who came forward after the incident which led to Johnson’s arrest for rape.

The jury will also see videos of other potential assaults Johnson allegedly recorded on his phone.

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