MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — A Morgantown man has been found guilty by Monongalia Circuit Court Judge Cindy Scott in connection with a domestic incident from March 2021 and could face more than 25 years in prison.
Robert Peacher, 33, was found guilty of burglary, second-degree sexual assault, strangulation, domestic battery, and harassment.
“It is a case that I was assigned prior to my new role, and the victim has been waiting a long time for justice, so I’m appreciative that we were able to accomplish that,” said Monongalia County Prosecuting Attorney Gabrielle Mucciola.
According to the investigation, a Morgantown woman was letting a friend out of her apartment when Peacher forced his way in while the door was open.
The victim told police that Peacher began to punch her in the face and chase her around a kitchen island; he then pulled out a large folding knife he had been known to carry. At one point, both ended up on the floor, with Peacher slamming the victim’s face into the floor. Peacher then put his hands around the victim’s throat.
During the assault, Peacher grabbed the victim’s genitals, pulled her hair, and slapped her before she used her watch to call 911.
“The investigation was pretty concentrated on the sexual assault aspect of the case,” said Mucciola. “This was a male who burglarized, made entry into her home, and began to sexually assault and strangle her,” she said.
Investigators also found a long history of harassment by Peacher towards the victim ahead of the assault. Based on the testimony of several witnesses, Mucciola stated Peacher was near her residence multiple times without her consent, and he attempted to make contact with her in public places such as Best Buy without her knowledge. The preceding events eventually led to the attack that could’ve gone way worse.
“The investigator here at my office began to dig a little bit deeper into those allegations and was able to locate several different witnesses who had observed pretty extreme harassment,” she said. “For example, him standing outside her bedroom window in the middle of the night,” she said.
The case was prosecuted by Mucciola and investigated by the Morgantown Police Department with assistance from Karl Streyle.
A sentencing date will be set in the future.