Conviction upheld for former Richfield Springs restaurant owner
RICHFIELD SPRINGS, N.Y. (WKTV) - A conviction has been upheld for former restaurant owner Isadoro Marra, who was convicted of rape in April 2011. Marra was the owner of Villa Isadoro, a popular restaurant in Richfield Springs. Marra was sentenced to 18 years in state prison, but took his case to the Appelate Division. The conviction was upheld there, leading Marra to take his case to the New York State Court of Appeals, which unanimously upheld the conviction. At his 2011 sentencing, a tearful Marra was told by the judge that 70 letters of support for Marra were received by the court and asking for leniency. The restaurant and bed and breakfast owner was convicted of raping a woman who had dinner at his restaurant back in 2009 and then fell asleep later that night on a couch at the bed and breakfast portion of Marra's business after her boyfriend left without her. The victim claimed that she did not wake up until Marra was allegedly having sex with her. The next morning, she received a ride back to her boyfriend's home from the boyfriend's mother, who works at the bed and breakfast portion of Villa Isidoro. Marra rode with them in the back seat of the car. Given the allegations against his client, George Aney said back when the guilty verdict came in that he was put behind the eight ball from the start. "As soon as you bring those four letter words into a courtroom, such as rape or drugs or whatever it may be, any defense lawyer has an uphill battle to fight, just because of the nature of the charge," Aney said on April 5, 2011. DNA experts testified during the trial that Marra's DNA was found on the victim, although none of Marra's DNA was actually found inside of her. The victim was asked why she did not call 911 if she was raped and instead kept calling her ex-boyfriend, who was said to have left her at the Villa Isidoro on the night of September 26, 2009. During testimony, the victim claimed she was in too much of a panic and was not thinking clearly that night. The nurse who attended to the alleged victim then took the stand, testifying that she gave a head-to-toe examination in the morning hours of September 27, 2009. When the nurse was asked if she ever questioned the victim as to how she sustained the bruises she had on her body at the time of the examination, or if they could have been from a prior physical altercation before the alleged rape, the nurse said "no," she had not asked the victim. Marra's attorney George Aney asked the victim during the course of the trial if it was true she had been overheard at the restaurant that September night drinking and telling people that "one day she would own the restaurant." However, before any response could be made, the statement was asked to be stricken from the court record.