The outcome of the sexual assault trial for 23-year-old Navy sailor Quinton Bezon, who is based in Guam but is a native of Ohio, spelled doom for his life and career.
He was convicted of sexual assault in the local court earlier this month, and is scheduled to report to a Guam prison on Aug. 25.
But Bezon is not giving up, and as of last night he has the support of 952 people in his quest for a new trial. This is the number of people who have signed Bezon's petition for a retrial.
He believes he might get a new day in court if he has 1,000 signatures to present to the governor, who can then ask the attorney general to revisit the case.
He's 48 votes short of his signature campaign, but he doesn't have much time. He also has taken to social media and, with the help of friends, crowdsourcing for his legal battle.
Bezon maintains his innocence
The sailor maintains he was wrongly accused and was wrongly convicted.
There are some aspects in Bezon's case that has had many people sign up for his cause. His family in Ohio is also pushing their congressman to call for a retrial.
Bezon said he was not alone with the woman named as the victim in his case. He was with several other friends in the same hotel room that they rented because they'd been out partying and drinking.
He said the rape kit didn't show penetration. And the woman who accused him, he said, made up the story of sexual assault because she didn't return to her wife that night.
He admits there was sexual contact between him and the woman, but when the woman indicated she didn't want to go any further, Bezon said he stopped. The woman's wife would later report the assault to police, he said.
Bezon: Jurors were asleep during trial
He also said certain jurors in his trial fell asleep and that they had to be woken up, a reason he wants to state for his quest for a retrial.
What Bezon does regret, he said, is going out and drinking and putting himself in a situation that has put his life in a tailspin. Instead of advancing in his military career, he faces dishonorable discharge, in addition to prison time.
He wants to share his story to many other young adults as a cautionary lesson.
"It's definitely a message to young sailors and military personnel and mostly young kids who mess around with alcohol ... I want to get the message out there to not mess with alcohol and to know your limit."
Assistant AG: 'We respect their verdict'
An attempt to reach the victim through the prosecutor was unsuccessful.
Assistant Attorney General Matthew Heibel said, the "jury was thoughtful and diligent (in) doing their civic duty and we respect their verdict."