Jury Convicts Man in 1984 Sexual Assault Cold Case
Published on May 05, 2017
GREELEY, Colo. (Weld County D.A.) – Nearly 33 years after the brutal sexual assault and kidnapping of a Greeley woman, one of the men responsible for the crime will soon learn his fate.
Today, a Weld County jury convicted Rusty Barnhart, 57, of the 1984 2nd degree kidnapping of a 20-year-old woman. He now faces up to 24 years in prison. Prosecutors weren’t able to charge him with sexual assault due to the statute of limitations, which extended only three years at the time.
The jury returned the guilty verdict after four days of testimony.
According to the affidavit, on July 31, 1984, the victim was walking home along 8th Avenue in Greeley after working the night shift at a Denny’s restaurant when two unknown men pulled her into an alley, threatened to kill her and sexually assaulted her.
At one point, the men moved her to another location after being spooked by headlights and completed the assault.
The case went cold for three decades until 2014 when a new Colorado law paid for and required law enforcement to test all unsolved rape kits. The test came back with two hits: Rusty Barnhart and his alleged accomplice, Inocencio Trevino, 49.
Trevino’s case is set for trial on August 21. Barnhart will be sentenced on July 21st at 8:30.
Due to the impending trial against Trevino, no further information will be made available at this time.