Update: Jury Hands Down Not Guilty Verdicts for Former CPD Officer

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Charlottesville Circuit Court (FILE) Charlottesville Circuit Court (FILE)
Christopher Alan Seymore leaving court (FILE IMAGE) Christopher Alan Seymore leaving court (FILE IMAGE)
Ronna Gary (FILE IMAGE) Ronna Gary (FILE IMAGE)

A jury has found a former officer with the Charlottesville Police Department (CPD) not guilty of two counts of forcible sodomy.

Jurors handed down their verdict around 11:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 6.

Ronna Gary claimed 36-year-old Christopher Alan Seymore twice forced her to perform oral sex on him inside her home along Shamrock Road back in November 2016.

The first sexual encounter happened while Seymore was on-duty, investigating a hit-and-run that Gary said she might have witnessed. He then reportedly returned to Gary’s home the next morning when he was off duty.

The defendant said both times were consensual, but Gary testified that she felt trapped, and only obliged because Seymore was an armed police officer.

Seymore had removed his police-issued body camera.

The jury did see a video recording of Seymore's police interrogation following the allegations made by Gary. In the interrogation, Seymore said, "the two encounters were terrible mistakes."

Charlottesville Commonwealth's Attorney Joseph Platania called a total of six witnesses to the stand during the two-day trial: Gary, a couple police officers, and another person who may have witnessed the hit-and-run.

Defense attorney Elizabeth Murtagh presented text messages to the jury, arguing that the context showed Gary consented

The defense also argued that Gary requested money from Seymore, but Seymore refused.

Murtagh had planned to call a total of 14 people to testify in the defense's case. Six people were called by the defense: more CPD officers, one of Gary's former managers, as well as a DNA expert.

The defense opted to dismiss many of its witnesses, having Seymore be the seventh and final person called to the stand. The former officer's testimony focused on his recollection of the events.

Ultimately, jurors said there was not enough evidence to prove the two incidents were not consensual.

The commonwealth said the situation put Gary under a heavy amount of psychological pressure. She says it's been "a painful 16 months" since the events occurred.

"These cases are very difficult to prosecute. There's a lot of emotional issues and it just happened and I'm still digesting it, but really again, appreciative of the jury and the work they put in their decision," Platania said.

Authorities told NBC29 that Seymore was with the Charlottesville Police Department for about 18 months.