ST. LOUIS – A jury convicted a 58-year-old man Wednesday for the rape of a girl last year at Compton Hill Reservoir Park.
The rape happened overnight on March 10, 2021. Police testified the 13-year-old victim sneaked out of her home around 2 a.m. to meet a friend in the park, located along S. Grand Boulevard near Interstate 44.
The girl was waiting for her friend when Clarence Battle, a stranger, walked up and threatened to shoot the teen if she didn’t have sex with him, prosecutors said. Battle removed the girl’s clothes and raped her.
After Battle fled the area, the girl’s friend found the victim, who was upset and crying. They called police and went to a hospital for an exam.
Surveillance video presented at trial showed Battle at the park that morning. Prosecutors also presented evidence of Battle’s DNA recovered from the victim.
Battle, who did not testify during the trial, was found guilty of statutory rape and statutory sodomy. The jury found him not guilty of a second count of statutory sodomy.
Battle will be sentenced on Jan. 12, 2023, in St. Louis Circuit Court.