UPDATE: (MURFREESBORO, TENN.) – A man who was arrested and charged with rape by Murfreesboro Police has been convicted and sentenced by the Circuit Courts of Rutherford County. Ilaz Neziri was arrested in May of 2020 under a sealed indictment stemming from a case that was investigated by the Murfreesboro Police Special Victims Unit. Neziri, who was 38 when the crime occurred, raped a female while at party that was inside a residence on Florence Road in Murfreesboro.
According to the original arrest report filed by MPD Detective Tommy Roberts, the victim and several of her friends reported the rape to dispatchers. An incident report showed that prior to police arriving, the victim also talked to emergency dispatchers - - confirming that she had been raped. When officers arrived at the address, they interviewed two females who further elaborated details about their 22-year-old friend, who they said was raped by Neziri during the party. One witness recalled seeing Neziri and the victim going into a bedroom at the residence for 5 to 10-minutes, followed by Neziri returning to the party.
The MPD presented their findings to a Rutherford County Grand Jury, eventually leading to the indictment of Neziri in late 2020. However, it wasn't until October of 2022 that Neziri appeared in Circuit Court for a four-day trial. During the trial, Neziri apparently maintained his innocence. While Neziri may have viewed himself as innocent, the jury felt otherwise after getting a first-hand look at the evidence and after hearing testimonies provided by witnesses.
Ultimately, the jurors found Neziri guilty. In Tennessee, that means a jury of 12 people had to come to a unanimous decision of guilt. The plea was filed before Judge Howard Wilson. According to the courts, Neziri was found guilty of Aggravated Rape, and two counts of Rape, all of which are felony convictions.
Earlier this week Neziri returned to court for sentencing. The Smyrna, TN resident, who is now 41-years-of-age, was sentenced to spend 17-years in prison. Courts confirmed on Thursday afternoon that Neziri will have to serve 100% of his sentence before he is eligible for release. He is currently behind bars.
SOURCE: Rutherford Co. Courts, 75CC1-2020-CR-84030 and MPD Reports, Arrest and Incident #20-0007431
Additional WGNS News Headlines:
- New Bill to Help Fund Rutherford County School Growth
- Rutherford Co. and Murfreesboro City Schools Closed Friday
- Free Bare-Root Tree Seedlings for Local Residents
- Tri-Star StoneCrest Hosts Rutherford Co. School Students
- Unemployment Rate in Tennessee Holds Steady
- Local Lawyer Announces $30,000 Raised to Help Others