|| ST. THOMAS, V.I. – A St. Thomas man has been sentenced to 40 years for raping a woman. V.I. Superior Court Judge Kathleen Mackay handed down the punishment today to Lloyd Wilkinson, 54, of no fixed address, after a jury convicted him of the Feb. 11, 2015, crime.
On Oct. 19, following two days of testimony and after several hours of deliberation that stretched over two days, 12 jurors returned a unanimous verdict, finding Wilkinson guilty of first-degree rape, first-degree assault and first-degree unlawful sexual contact. This was his second trial on the charges; his first trial, which lasted Feb. 8-9, ended in a hung jury.
At his sentencing hearing, Attorney General Claude Earl Walker recommended that Wilkinson receive the maximum penalty of 60 years for the crimes as he has a criminal history dating back to 1995.
“We are going to continue to take a tough stance on sexual assault cases and will seek the maximum penalty for those found guilty of rape,” AG Walker said.
In addressing the court, the victim echoed the recommendation of the prosecution, saying that life will never be the same for her family. “We’re all damaged, we’re scared everyday of our lives and we think he should receive the maximum,” she said.
Through his defense attorney, Wilkinson maintained that he was innocent of the crime.
After having heard allocutions from both sides, Judge Mackay sentenced Wilkinson to serve 30 years behind bars for first-degree rape, five years for first-degree assault to run consecutively with the 30-year prison term and another five years for first-degree unlawful sexual contact. However, the imposition or execution of that five-year sentence for the unlawful sexual contact conviction is stayed, Judge Mackay ruled. Wilkinson was
also given credit for time served. He was immediately remanded to the Bureau of Corrections to begin serving his sentence.
According to the evidence presented at trial, the victim was walking in the Frenchtown area when
Wilkinson approached her and asked her for a lighter, which she handed to him. When Wilkinson was returning the lighter, he grabbed the victim from behind around the neck in a chokehold, dragged her into the bushes behind a truck, pushed her down to the ground and raped her. After the assault, the victim went to Schneider hospital to report the incident. During her interview with police, she was able to identify her attacker. Wilkinson was arrested on Feb. 12, 2015, and has been in jail since then.
The trial was prosecuted by Assistant Attorneys General Nadja Harrigan and Quincy McRae.