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Trial for man charged with burglary, sexual abuse begins today

Published: Wednesday, May 15, 2013 11:08 a.m. CDT • Updated: Wednesday, May 15, 2013 11:11 a.m. CDT

Jury selection was set to begin this morning in the trial of a Lynnville man charged with breaking into a Lynnville home and sexually assaulting a sleeping 17-year-old girl inside.

Gary Lee Eilander, 43, faces up to 20 years in prison on charges of second-degree burglary and third-degree sexual abuse, both Class C felonies, if convicted. The charges stem from an incident during the early-morning hours of June 30, 2012.

According to a law enforcement affidavit filed at the time Eilander was charged, he is alleged to have entered the upstairs bedroom of a Lynnville home where three females were sleeping. A 17-year-old girl said she awoke to rustling noises and a hand touching her inappropriately.

The girl said she was able to push the hand away, flee the room and awake her parents. Eilander was confronted in the kitchen of the home.

Also according to the law enforcement affidavit, the parents said Eilander appeared to be intoxicated. His public defender, Jonathan Noble, announced his intention last week to use intoxication as a defense at trial.

Eilander originally faced a charge of first-degree burglary, a Class B felony, which was later amended to second-degree burglary. He remains in the Jasper County Jail in lieu of $35,000 bond. A protection order for the alleged victim also has been filed.

Once jury selection is concluded, the trial will begin. It is expected to conclude by the end of the week.

Daily News Editor Bob Eschliman may be contacted at (641) 792-3121, ext. 423, or at beschliman@newtondailynews.com.

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