GUTHRIE — A former Oklahoma Highway Patrol trooper accused of having sexual intercourse with a woman he took into custody has been charged with second-degree rape, Logan County District Attorney Tom Lee said Tuesday.
Patrick Venable, 27, is accused of taking a female driver into custody for suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol on the Broadway Extension in Oklahoma City, then transporting her to a residence in Guthrie to have sexual intercourse.
Venable resigned June 29. Court records show the date of the offense was June 20.
His attorney, Carl Hughes, said he will plead not guilty to the charge.
“He gave up his life and his dream of being a highway patrolman, and we're here today to defend,” Hughes said.
Hughes said Venable didn't commit a crime because the woman wasn't under arrest or in custody. He said Venable released her and took her home. Hughes refused Tuesday to comment on the allegations of sexual misconduct.
Col. Kerry Pettingill said in July that the Oklahoma Highway Patrol received an anonymous phone call regarding the incident. The agency turned its findings over to the Logan County district attorney on July 22.
“It goes against our very core values if this proves to be true,” Pettingill said a news conference in July. “We have to have the people of this state trust us. As enforcers of the law, we have to enforce the laws even if it's internal. However, there's only so much we can do. We've done that.”
Venable's parents accompanied him Tuesday afternoon to the Logan County courthouse in Guthrie. He appeared before Special Judge R.L. Hert, who set his next court appearance for 2 p.m. Sept. 22. His bond was set at $10,000.
Hughes said he's known Venable since he was 6 years old. He said his family is having a rough time dealing with the situation.
“They're a really very close, very religious family,” he said.
The charge of second-degree rape is a felony and is punishable by one to 15 years in the state penitentiary if Venable is found guilty, Lee said.