Jonathan Wilson, now 29, approached an 18-year-old McMain student near Nashville and Danneel on Dec. 7, 2011, asking to borrow a phone because his car had broken down, then pulled a gun and forced her into the vehicle, police said at the time. He drove her around the Uptown area — stopping in both the Riverbend and Broadmoor to assault her — then dropped her off on Broad Street in Mid-City, police said.
Wilson had previously been caught masturbating near another nearby school and chased away by a security guard, leading to his identification, according to District Attorney Leon Cannizzaro’s office, and his DNA was present on the victim’s clothing. He initially faced a charge of aggravated rape — which carries a mandatory sentence of life in prison — but prosecutors agreed to the lesser charges of forcible rape, armed robbery and second-degree kidnapping in exchange for a 20-year-sentence that cannot be reduced by parole, probation or for good behavior.
For more details, see the full news release from the district attorney’s office:
District Attorney’s Office Convicts Jonathan Wilson of Forcible Rape, Armed Robbery, and Second Degree Kidnapping
Pursuant to Plea Agreement Defendant Receives a 20 Year Prison Sentence
District Attorney Leon Cannizzaro’s office convicted Jonathan Wilson, 29, of one count of forcible rape, one count of armed robbery with a firearm and one count of second degree kidnapping. Tuesday morning before the jury selection process began, the defendant pled guilty to the forcible rape charge. Additionally, he pled guilty-as-charged to the armed robbery and the kidnapping. Pursuant to the terms of the plea agreement, the defendant was sentenced to 20 years in prison.
On December 7, 2011, in the early evening hours, the defendant approached the 18 year old female victim outside her high school near the intersection of Nashville and Daneel Street. The defendant asked the victim if he could borrow her cell phone because his vehicle had broken down. The defendant then pulled a semiautomatic handgun and forced the victim into his vehicle.
He drove the victim to the intersection of Walnut and Leake where he forced the victim to perform oral sex. He then drove the victim to the intersection of South Prieur and General Pershing and assaulted the victim again. Ultimately, the defendant kicked the defendant out of his car on Broad Street near Palmyra.
The defendant was developed as a suspect when a security guard from a school in the same neighborhood as the victim’s school reported chasing an individual away who was caught masturbating in front of the school. The car driven by that individual matched the description of the vehicle used in the rape. The security guard recorded the license plate of the vehicle, which ultimately led back to the defendant.
Additionally, DNA evidence recovered from the victim’s clothing matched the DNA profile of the defendant. Following the defendant’s guilty plea, the victim took the stand to inform the court how the crime has affected her.
Assistant District Attorneys Laura Rodrigue and Iain Dover prosecuted the case.
In response to this conviction, District Attorney Leon Cannizzaro said, “This defendant’s brutal actions have dramatically changed the life of a young woman. Now he will have to serve every day of his twenty year sentence.”
Pursuant to the terms of the plea agreement, the state agreed to amend an aggravated rape charge to forcible rape if the defendant received a sentence of at least 20 years. The sentence on the forcible rape conviction must be served without benefit of probation, parole, suspension of sentence, or reduction for good time.