The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Local News

December 4, 2012

Defendant facing rape charges in two counties

JOPLIN, Mo. — A 21-year-old man has been ordered bound over for trial on charges that he raped a woman in Granby while free on bond from a prior alleged rape in Joplin.

Dakota R. Gunter waived a preliminary hearing Tuesday in Newton County Circuit Court on five felony counts stemming from the investigation of a sexual assault of a 22-year-old woman on or about Sept. 21 at a home in Granby.

Associate Circuit Judge Gregory Stremel ordered the defendant bound over for trial on a single count of forcible rape and four counts of forcible sodomy. The judge set Gunter’s initial appearance in a trial division of the court for Dec. 10.

Newton County court records show that an arrest warrant was issued for the defendant Nov. 2 following an investigation by Granby police.

A probable-cause affidavit alleges that Gunter forced himself on the woman “by using the implied threat of kidnapping.” Besides raping her, he is accused of compelling her participation in four acts of sodomy by using the same implied threat.

Jasper County court records indicate that Gunter was charged about six months previously with raping a 20-year-old woman in Joplin. That rape is alleged to have taken place March 24 at a home in a central Joplin neighborhood. Gunter was arrested four days later but posted $5,000 bond April 11 and was released from custody.

The Joplin case came to light when officers responded to a report of a misdemeanor assault March 26. While looking into that matter, officers learned of the alleged rape at the same home two days earlier, according to police records.

A probable-cause affidavit states that Gunter forced himself on the woman in Joplin in the middle of the night and would not stop despite her repeated objections.

Court records show that Gunter also is charged with a misdemeanor assault on a man Aug. 27 in Fairview while free on bond. An affidavit filed in that case states that he was waiting in hiding prior to striking the other man as he was getting out of a vehicle. A summons was issued in that case on Sept. 13, and no arrest was made.

Gunter is being held in the Newton County Jail on $50,000 bond.

Residency

Court records state that Dakota Gunter was living in Joplin when he was charged with raping a woman in March of this year. But following his arrest a month ago in connection with a rape in Granby in September, Gunter listed a Wheaton address as his home.

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