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Jeffrey Dake

Other Wisconsin Exonerations In Cases with Child Victims
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In 1997, a 14-year-old girl accused 27-year-old Jeffrey Dake, a family friend who sometimes stayed in her family’s home in Langlade County, Wisconsin, of coming home drunk and raping her twice. 
 
The girl said someone jumped into her bed in the middle of the night, and though it was dark, she knew it was Dake because of the feel of his shoes. She said Dake gave her $20 not to tell anyone. 
 
At trial in Langlade County Circuit Court, the girl's step-father testified that Dake knew that the victim was offered $20, a detail only the rapist would know. Dake claimed that the family told him that information after the crime. 
 
In March 1998, a jury convicted Dake of rape and he was sentenced to 16 years in prison. 
 
The Wisconsin Innocence Project at the University of Wisconsin Law School began reinvestigating Dake's case in 2006, and discovered that the prosecution had withheld evidence that the girl’s step-father had also been charged with sexually assaulting her during the same time period when she claimed Dake assaulted her. The step-father had negotiated a deal with the prosecution in exchange for his testimony against Dake.
 
In June 2007, a Langlade County Circuit Court judge granted Dake a new trial. The prosecution dismissed the charges after the victim said that she did not want to go through another trial.
 
- Stephanie Denzel

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Posting Date:  Before June 2012
State:Wisconsin
County:Langlade
Most Serious Crime:Child Sex Abuse
Additional Convictions:
Reported Crime Date:1997
Convicted:1998
Exonerated:2007
Sentence:16 years
Race:Caucasian
Sex:Male
Age at the date of crime:27
Contributing Factors:Mistaken Witness ID, Official Misconduct
Did DNA evidence contribute to the exoneration?:No