A Clayton County jury has convicted a Stone Mountain man who was charged with exposing a Union City woman to the HIV virus that causes AIDS, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.
Craig Lamar Davis, 43, did not react to the verdict when it was announced in the courtroom just moments ago. The self-proclaimed pastor faces up to 20 years in prison on the felony reckless-HIV conviction.
“We are pleased with the verdict,” said Kathryn Powers, deputy chief assistant district attorney, one of three prosecutors in the case. “They (jury) were able to weigh the validity of testimony of people who don’t believe AIDS or HIV exist.”
Powers added that the conviction sends a "strong message" that people infected with the HIV virus should notify their partners of their status.
Black women account for 30 percent of new HIV infections in the U.S.
District Attorney Tracy Graham Lawson said Tuesday’s verdict sets the stage for an upcoming trial in Fulton County, where Davis is accused of exposing an Atlanta woman to the HIV virus and not disclosing his HIV status to her.
In the Fulton County case, the woman alleges she had been celibate for 15 years before she met and fell in Love with Davis, who was married. She said Davis laughed when she advised him of her HIV status after she had unprotected sex with him.
The Office of Medical and Scientific Justice flew in experts to testify on Davis' behalf. The OMSJ claims current HIV tests on the market state on the packaging that they can not be used to definitively detect HIV.
OMSJ director Clark Baker is considering suing the doctors, hospitals and others who Baker believes misdiagnosed Davis with HIV.
Baker has had minor success in the past overturning cases where a HIV positive defendant was found guilty of using HIV as a weapon.
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