Ed Lyons cleared of all charges

On Wednesday Feb. 11, a jury of his peers cleared Edward Lyons of all charges stemming from allegations of rape and sexual assault.

The 86-year-old North Fork resident was originally arrested Friday, Feb. 28, 2014 and charged with nine counts of unlawful contact with a minor.

Those charges were later extended to 21 counts including seven counts of sexual penetration by force or fear; seven counts of oral copulation by force or fear; and seven counts of rape by force or fear.

The incidents were said to have taken place between Jan. 1988 and Oct. 1989.

It took the 12-person jury (eight women and four men) nearly two and a half days to return with a decision before announcing their not-guilty verdict on all 21 counts.

Lyons has spent the past 349 days in jail during the trial and was defended by Fresno attorney Robert Troncoso. If convicted Lyons faced more than 150 years. The case was overseen by Madera County Judge Dale Blea.