A jury that deliberated more than two hours after a daylong trial Wednesday in 2nd District Court found a 36-year-old Syracuse man not guilty of unlawful sexual intercourse.
Lane Stromberg, 1487 S. 1250 West, took the stand late in the afternoon and admitted hugging, kissing, and fondling a 15-year-old girl, but he denied having sexual relations with her.The girl took the stand as the prosecution's first witness, telling the six-woman, two-man jury she and Stromberg had relations in Stromberg's home in early March.
Defense attorney Dave Knowlton introduced evidence of drug and alcohol abuse by the girl in addition to a suicide attempt, psychological counseling and testimony from the girl's friends that cast doubt on her credibility.
It was the girl's report of the incident, plus a statement she had seen Stromberg using marijuana in his home, that led the Syracuse Police and the county's narcotics strike force to raid Stromberg's home in May.
The search uncovered a small quantity of marijuana in Stromberg's house and three pounds of pure, pharmaceutical-quality cocaine in a camping cooler in his garage.