UPDATE 10:15 P.M. After 5 hours of deliberation the jury returned late Wednesday night with combined sentences of 23 years in prison for David Allen Russell. District Attorney Greg Willis says sentences of up to 15 years would be served simultaneously, but an eight-year sentence for indecency with a child would be served upon completion of the 15-year term. Russell had faced up to life in prison.
COLLIN COUNTY (CBSDFW.COM/AP) – It was just before Midnight Tuesday that a Collin County jury found a former chiropractor guilty of sexual assault and indecency. Now the punishment phase of David Allen Russell’s trial is underway.
Russell was a licensed chiropractor, practicing in McKinney, when he was accused of sexually assaulting numerous patients. He was found guilty on five counts — including the sexual assault of a child. He had faced 13 separate charges, stemming from five cases.
After a late night,the sentencing phase of the trial got underway Wednesday morning with several women testifying how Russell fondled and touched them sexually during visits to his medical office.
Russell was arrested three times as the allegations continued to come forward during the investigation. The 44-year-old’s medical license was suspended in 2011.
As of late morning, seven women had testified with one describing her abuse as a child and how Russell’s assaults took her back to her childhood.
All of the women who pressed charges and came forward to testify said they did so after hearing news reports about Russell’s arrest and indictment. The women say they believe Russell would be a danger to the community if not in prison.
”A predator is a predator,” one woman told the court, when the prosecutor in the case explained how Russell’s potential sentence could range from probation to prison time. ”It doesn’t matter where he is. He’s a predator,” she said.
Many of Russell’s victims were students at the Taylor Dance Studio in McKinney. Russell was dating the owner of the studio at the time of the assaults. During the trial Russell claimed he simply treated the girls for injuries and did nothing wrong.
The jury, of eight women and four men, listened to testimony in the sentencing phase of the trial for a little more than an hour before taking a brief recess.
Testimony resumed around 10:30 a.m. At the time, prosecutors said they wanted to present testimony from nine additional witnesses.
(©2013 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report. )
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