A truck driver from Philadelphia was found ‘not guilty’ of sexual assault after spending eight months in jail. 

49-year-old truck driver, Angel L. Vega Padua, was accused of fondling a young girl on the east side of Staunton, Virginia in November of 2020, and was jailed for several months as he awaited trial. 

According to News-Leader, Padua was playing hide-and-seek with a girl under 10 at his friend’s house when he found her hiding behind a chair. The girl testified in court that Padua allegedly tried to touch her inappropriately after tickling her, and that he had ripped her romper, which had already had a hole in it, during play. 

Padua was adamant that he had never touched the girl inappropriately, and maintained this position during his eight month stay in jail, but did not take the stand during trial. After the jury deliberated for two hours in Staunton Circuit Court, Padua was acquitted of the charges of aggravated sexual battery. 

“It’s just been hard sitting in jail for eight months for something that he’s been adamant he didn’t do,” said Linda Czyzyk of the Staunton Public Defender’s Office.

Padua was released from Middle River Regional Jail the same day following the jury’s not guilty verdict.

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