Nebraskan Loses Appeal of Rape Conviction

ne-court-of-appeals(AP) — A man convicted of beating and raping a Beatrice woman has lost appeals of his conviction and sentence.

The Nebraska Court of Appeals Court ruled Tuesday against 31-year-old Joseph Buttercase. In December Buttercase was given 20 to 30 years for sexual assault, four to five years for false imprisonment, 20 months to five years for strangulation and one year for domestic assault. The sentences are to run consecutively.

Prosecutors say Buttercase raped and brutally beat a 29-year-old woman in July 2011 after they argued at his home.

The Appeals Court rejected Buttercase’s arguments, saying there was sufficient evidence to support the convictions and that the trial judge didn’t abuse his discretion by barring evidence about the victim’s past sexual activity. The court also said the sentences were not excessive.