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Onawa teen sentenced to 20 years prison for raping girls

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ONAWA, Iowa -- Looking straight at Jay Lee Neubaum, one of his victims told him she was forever changed when he raped her when she was 13 years old, and so were other girls he assaulted.

"We live in fear because of you," the girl said. "Someday I hope you realize what you have done, and I hope you open your eyes and realize the pain you have caused."

A second victim told District Judge Zachary Hindman that after she was raped at age 14 by Neubaum, she shut down.

"I was broken down and hurt in many ways. ... He has taken away my innocence in ways I'll never get back," the girl said Friday in Monona County District Court.

Neubaum, 19, of Onawa, stared forward while the girls spoke, not appearing to meet their eyes or glance in their direction. He did not speak when given the chance before Hindman sentenced him to 20 years in prison on three counts of third-degree sexual abuse.

Hindman ordered the sentence to be added to a 50-year sentence Neubaum is currently serving for second-degree murder, increasing his total sentence to 70 years. He could be released on parole before serving the whole sentence. If he is, he will be on court supervision for the remainder of his life because of the sexual abuse conviction and he also must register with the Iowa Sex Offender Registry for life.

Hindman presided over Neubaum's trial in December and in June announced his verdict, finding Neubaum guilty of two counts involving the rape and assault of one of the girls and one count for the rape of the other. Hindman found Neubaum not guilty of seven other counts of sexual abuse involving five more girls, saying he had reasonable doubt about their claims because of inconsistencies in their trial testimony and statements. Neubaum had been charged with assaulting the girls, ranging in age from 13-16 at the time, from August 2019 through March 2020 in and around Mapleton, Iowa, where he attended school.

Neubaum's attorney, Theresa Rachel, had asked for all of Neubaum's sentences to be served concurrently, or at the same time. Going further, she asked for a suspended sentence on the sexual abuse charges so Neubaum could be on probation when he's paroled from prison on his murder charge. She said Neubaum is better off out of prison because he's currently receiving no counseling or therapy services, though he desires them. If he were released from prison, he could resume the therapy he was receiving while on pretrial release before his murder trial. He also could receive sex offender treatment, which has not yet been provided to him in prison.

"We are not asking for leniency, we are asking for rehabilitation," Rachel said.

Rachel called Neubaum to the witness stand to talk about his progress toward his high school diploma and also his lack of access to counseling. If given probation and released on parole, Neubaum said, he would get a job and continue counseling sessions to prove he's not a threat to the community.

"People call me a murderer and stuff. I take that pretty serious," Neubaum said.

Calling for consecutive prison sentences, Monona County Attorney Ian McConaughey countered that Neubaum has shown no remorse for any of his crimes.

Neubaum is currently incarcerated at the Anamosa State Penitentiary, where he's serving his second-degree murder sentence for the Jan. 31, 2020, shooting death of 16-year-old Joseph Hopkins in Mapleton. A Monona County jury convicted him of the crime in May 2021.

Hopkins, of Mapleton, was shot once in the forehead with a 12-gauge shotgun while he, Neubaum and two other teenage boys were working on a demolition derby car in a garage.

The Iowa Court of Appeals affirmed his conviction last month.

Trial history of Onawa's Jay Lee Neubaum

In May 2021, Onawa teen Jay Lee Neubaum was found guilty of second-degree murder. In June 2022, he was convicted on 3 counts sexual abuse. Read through the saga in this collection.

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The boy was transported to the juvenile detention center in Woodbury County and held on $1 million cash or surety bond. The Iowa State Medical Examiner ruled the 16-year-old victim's death a homicide from a single gunshot wound to the head. 

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According to court documents, Jay Lee Neubaum is accused of firing a single shot from a shotgun at Joseph Hopkins, who died of a single gunshot wound to the head.

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If found guilty of first-degree murder as an adult, Jay Lee Neubaum would face a mandatory sentence of life in prison without parole.

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Complaints accuse Jay Lee Neubaum of raping six teenage girls and forcing sexual contact with a seventh between September and March. The girls ranged in age from 13 to 16. He is already facing charges of first-degree murder.

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According to court documents, Jay Lee Neubaum is accused of raping six teenage girls and forcing sexual contact with the seventh. The girls ranged in age from 13 to 16. He also faces first-degree murder charges.

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ONAWA, Iowa -- An Onawa teenager charged with fatally shooting another teen and sexually assaulting several teenage girls will be prosecuted as an adult.

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Jay Lee Neubaum is scheduled to stand trial in August for first-degree murder. He entered a written not guilty plea Friday to 10 counts of third-degree sexual abuse for the alleged rape of six teenage girls and forced sexual contact with a seventh.

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ONAWA, Iowa -- Rather than face one trial for 10 counts of sexual abuse, an Onawa teenager now could have seven separate trials -- one for each alleged victim.

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ONAWA, Iowa -- Jurors chosen for Jay Lee Neubaum's trial must decide whether his fatal shooting of a fellow teenager was a deliberate act committed in anger or a horrible accident.

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ONAWA, Iowa -- Jaxon Hopkins watched as Jay Lee Neubaum pulled the bolt back on a 12-gauge shotgun, checking for shells inside, then squeezed the trigger.

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ONAWA, Iowa -- Her son may be gone, fatally shot nearly a year and a half ago in a Mapleton, Iowa, garage, but Crystal Hopkins said his killer can't take away her memories.

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ONAWA, Iowa -- An Onawa teen was sentenced Thursday to 50 years in prison for the shooting death of another teen in a Mapleton, Iowa, garage.

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Neubaum, 18, is charged with 10 counts of 3rd-degree sexual abuse for the alleged sexual assault of 6 girls and forced sexual contact with a 7th.

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In May, a Monona County jury found Neubaum guilty of second-degree murder in the shooting death of Joseph Hopkins, 16, of Mapleton. Neubaum is currently serving a 50-year prison term on that offense.

News VU QR Code- Neubaum trial history

News VU QR Code- Neubaum trial history

READ through the entire Neubaum trial history by pointing your smartphone camera at the QR code and tapping the link.

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The boys were transported to Lakes Regional Healthcare in Spirit Lake, where the 15-year-old was pronounced dead. The 14-year-old was treated and released.

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