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Teton County rape case heads to jury for a third time

Driggs

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DRIGGS — A new trial date has been set for 41-year-old Ryan Richard Berry in April 2022.

It will be Teton County’s third attempt to try the Tetonia resident and it will bring the case into its fifth year. Berry was originally arrested in 2018 and is charged with four felony counts including rape, destruction of evidence, supplying alcohol to a minor and video voyeurism.

This summer brought major challenges to the case.

In May 2021, District Court Judge Steven Boyce declared a mistrial after the case could not find enough jurors to serve.

RELATED | Mistrial declared in rape case after jurors fail to show up

Afterward, Teton County Prosecutor Bailey Smith filed a separate case against Berry based on testimony given to the Teton County Sheriff’s Office. The complaint alleges Berry tried to influence a member of the jury during the trial in May. That case is still active.

A trial was rescheduled for July 2021 but again was declared a mistrial by Boyce. Members of the jury let the judge know that during their deliberation that they had somehow obtained a piece of evidence that was supposed to be redacted.

RELATED: Teton County rape case ends in mistrial for the second time

The evidence was redacted body-camera footage worn by a Teton County Sheriff deputy during the execution of a search warrant at Berry’s home in 2018. The video had been redacted or edited, per the defense’s request in favor of Berry and had been used during the trial. But the unredacted video somehow ended up with the jury during their deliberation.

This case has now become the longest open case in Teton County over the last 30 years, due in part to the mistrials, legal maneuvering and the COVID-19 pandemic. Berry has been out of jail on $50,000 bail since his arrest in 2018.

Bailey declined to comment for this story citing that the case is active.

The trial has been scheduled for April 4 to 8, 2022 in Teton County.

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