Unsealed records reveal details of rape case involving former county prosecutor

The unsealing of court proceedings in the felony rape case against former Montgomery County assistant prosecutor John C. Amos sheds new light on the origins and handling of the case.

Visiting Judge Daniel Hogan on Tuesday lifted an order sealing the case from public view, saying the continued concealment of court records was a mistake he became aware of when the Dayton Daily News asked about it. The case is being prosecuted in Montgomery County Common Pleas Court.

The records say that on June 12, 2020 Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office detectives met with the alleged victim, who said the incident occurred on April 19 or April 26, 2013.

The alleged victim told detectives that he was drinking with Amos — whom he’d never met — at a bar and became extremely intoxicated. A bartender called a cab, which allegedly took them back to Amos’ house, where the alleged victim claims he was sexually assaulted while slipping in and out of consciousness.

The Dayton Daily News does not identify the victims of alleged sexual assaults.

Amos was indicted in July on two counts of rape, one count of sexual battery and two counts of gross sexual imposition.

Amos has pleaded not guilty to the charges. An indictment is an allegation and a defendant should be presumed innocent until proven guilty.

Court records include a statement from Amos, dated October 2020 but apparently forwarded to a sheriff’s office detective in December 2021.

“Any sexual activity that I have ever been involved in has always been between two knowing and consenting adults,” the statement reads. “Any assertion to the contrary, is a patent falsehood and an attempt to malign my name and reputation.”

“Due to the extreme delay in reporting, the vagueness of the allegation, and the overall lack of any corroboration, it is very difficult to directly address this allegation at this time. However, if provided, I don’t believe my position would change from above.”

Amos’ attorney in a December 2022 filing criticized the investigation, saying for nearly eight months after the complaint the sheriff’s detective “apparently did little if any investigation.”

The case was handed to the Montgomery County Prosecutor’s Office in February 2021, which passed it along to a special prosecutor in Hamilton County. It then went back to Montgomery County for several months before being given to a Lucas County special prosecutor, who obtained the indictment.

The filing from Amos’ attorney says there were plea negotiations when the case was with Hamilton County, but otherwise there were months-long periods where it appears little was done with the case.

“It is also noteworthy that during the time referenced above, the defendant was not suspended, put on leave, or transferred to another, less public position. In fact, the defendant continued to prosecute the highest profile cases in Montgomery County until he was indicted on July 15, 2022,” his attorney Andrew Pratt wrote.

Because of “the unusual timeline of the investigation,” the attorney is attempting to access records of the case being presented to a Montgomery County grand jury.

Court records also include text messages between the alleged victim and the bartender from the bar where the alleged victim says he and Amos met. In those messages the bartender identifies Amos as the person she saw him leave the bar with, and tells the alleged victim that Amos is “a head prosecutor of Dayton.”

“The evidence shows that (the alleged victim) reached out to (the bartender) within a week of the rape taking place,” says a filing from prosecutors seeking to use the text messages in court. “He did not know the defendant’s name or occupation. Certainly such evidence demonstrates that (the alleged victim) did not have an underlying motive to secure a financial windfall or some other benefit when he first alerted (the bartender) that something serious happened to him. It also shows that the disclosure (the alleged victim) made to law enforcement in June of 2020 was not the result of a recent fabrication.”

Among the witnesses the state wants to call is a licensed social worker to testify, among other things, that the delayed reporting of an incident like this — even for years — is not uncommon, court records show.

The next hearing in the case is scheduled for March 9.

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