Sacto 9-1-1
April 17, 2009
Sacramento jury convicts man of violent hate crime

From Andy Furillo:

Another Sacramento jury convicted Daniel James Harper today of attempted murder, sexual assault, mayhem and other charges for his hate-inspired kidnap and attack on a Latina nearly five years ago.

Harper, 33, had been convicted in March 2006 for the Oct. 30, 2004, abduction of a woman from the parking lot of the San Juan Medical Center and his near fatal assault on her in a rural area in southern Sacramento County.

Besides convicting Harper on 12 counts, the jury today also found the allegations to be true that they were hate crimes. According to evidence at trial, Harper claimed he had once been beaten up by a group of "Mexicans." The prosecution claimed that he singled out his victim in the 2004 attack because of her race.

Superior Court Judge Gary S. Mullen is scheduled to sentence Harper on May 15.

The state's Third District Court of Appeals overturned harper's previous conviction in January 2008.

Previously authorities told The Bee that after kidnapping the victim, Harper forced her to withdraw money from an ATM. Harper then drove the woman around the county for four hours, investigators said.

After forcing the woman to perform a sexual act, Harper beat her unconscious, slit her throat and lit her on fire, authorities said. Left for dead, the woman regained consciousness and waved down help on New Hope Road in southern Sacramento County.

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