Both sides agree that Fato left a Charleston bar with a man early on Nov. 16, 2008, and that Snavely pulled her over in Jefferson because he suspected she was driving drunk. Fato said Snavely followed her home and forced her to have sex; he said she initiated the sexual encounter.
In his closing argument Thursday, Lonnie Simmons, one of Fato's lawyers, argued that the entire time Fato was with Snavely, she was in a position where she could be arrested and didn't feel she could refuse to do anything he said.
Simmons pointed out that Snavely turned off his camera as Fato got into his car after her field sobriety tests.
"Think about that circumstance. When she walked to the card, she was scared," Simmons said. "She thinks she flunked those tests."
Simmons also pointed out that while the State Police found fault with Snavely's actions, he is now police chief in Hinton.
"He really needs to be held accountable and hasn't been held accountable," Simmons said. "This is something you have the power to do. ... You are the conscience of this community."
Snavely's lawyer, Lou Ann Cyrus, said the sex between Fato and Snavely was completely consensual. She reminded the jury about all the conflicting statements Fato gave about that evening.
For example, in a previous deposition, Fato gave some details about a second, more secluded spot where she and Snavely went. At trial, Fato said she didn't remember anything about the second stop.
"She had so many conflicting statements I don't know what her position is," Cyrus said. "I can't keep up."
She said when Fato was alone in her car and driving to her house, she could have called for help. Instead, she called her roommates and told them she was brining a state trooper home.
"If [Snavely] wanted to force himself on her there is no way on God's green earth he would have taken her to a location with other people," Cyrus said.
The husband of the friend with whom Fato was staying had set up video equipment that recorded part of the night's events. Clifford, who addressed the jury last, said the defense's implication that part of the videotape was missing, where Snavely left and Fato escorted him out, was wrong.
"I didn't care what was on that tape because it showed Mr. Snavely going into her room in uniform," Clifford said. "God bless Jason Knapp for having that video, because if not for that [Snavely] would still be a police officer, pulling women over on Route 60. ... He was in full uniform with his gun, with his mace, with his handcuffs. You tell me whether [Fato felt she could say no]."
The trial began Monday in Kanawha Circuit Judge James C. Stucky's courtroom.
Reach Gary Harki at gha...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-5163.