Accused rapist released from jail days before attack

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Amuri Diole during his arraignment hearing on April 30, 2021.

MANCHESTER, NH – Six days after he was released from jail on personal recognizance, Amuri Diole was arrested and charged with raping a woman for two hours in the Valley Cemetery.

Diole, 27, whose address is listed in court documents as 92 Walnut St., Chester, but who police say is homeless, was arraigned Friday in Hillsborough County Superior Court Northern District on three counts of aggravated felonious sexual assault and two counts of criminal threatening.  Pleas of not guilty were entered to all charges.  

Judge Diane Nicolosi ordered Diole be preventatively detained pending an evidentiary hearing on May 17.

Last year, Diole was found to be incompetent to stand trial on a second-degree assault charge from 2018 in which he was accused of beating a man in Merrimack.  The judge presided at a hearing earlier this year to determine if he could be restored to competency.

On April 23, however, Judge Charles Temple ordered Diole’s release from jail.

 “The State has been unable to secure an involuntary commitment order and the 90 day hold period expires on April 27, 2021. As such, Mr. Diole’s release is mandatory under RSA 135:17-a, V. Upon release, Mr. Diole is directed to contact Mobile Crisis at 1-800-688-3544. He shall be released on an immediate basis from the jail.”

According to court records, The woman briefly escaped from her assailant and called police on her cell phone just before 5 p.m. on Thursday to say she was being raped at the cemetery.  

Officer Benjamin Foster located her behind the mausoleum.  “She was wearing a sweatshirt, nothing else,” Assistant Hillsborough County Attorney Elena Brander told the judge. Her hands and legs were bloodied and she was wet.

She was taken by ambulance to a local hospital where she was interviewed by an officer.  She said Diole raped her for two hours and that he slammed her head against a granite pillar, knocking her out.

After an undetermined amount of time she tried to escape and began to run.  Diole caught her, put a knife to the back of her neck and forced her to perform oral sex, according to court records.

After a time, the woman was able to get to her purse and dial 911 on her cell phone.  Diole again restrained her and raped her, police said.  When she began screaming for help, he held the knife to her throat and threatened to kill her.

Diole was found in the cemetery and arrested.

Defense attorney Tom Stonitsch asked the judge to release Diole on personal recognizance bail with conditions.  He said the prosecutor has not produced any corroborating evidence.  He said police did not find a knife on Diole nor did they recover one.  He said nothing connects him to the alleged victim.

Stonitsch pointed out that the alleged incident happened in a place known to be inhabited by the homeless and at a time people are walking there.

He said it is hard for him to believe that nobody would have heard or reported seeing something happening over two hours in the cemetery.

Brander said Diole has a criminal record dating back to 2011 which includes convictions for robbery, simple assault, criminal threatening, breach of bail, criminal trespass and resisting arrest.

According to court records, the second-degree assault case remains open.  

On Nov. 19, 2018, in Merrimack, he allegedly beat John Brent who had hired him and another man to help move items for 30 Ellie Drive.  Displeased with the two men’s performance, Brent took them aside and explained what he expected.  Neither man was receptive to the criticism and Diole accused Brent of being a racist and picking on him because he was Black.

Brent fired them but both men kept trying to return to the house.  Brent began recording them from his cell phone and Diole knocked the phone out of his hand.  When Brent went to pick it up, Diole jumped on top of him and started punching him, according to court records.   Brent tried to defend himself but Diole knocked him to the ground and kept punching him.  Eventually, residents came outside and tried to stop the fight.  Once they were separated, Diole picked up Brent’s cell phone and erased the video he had recorded.

Brent suffered a broken nose, black eyes, a mild concussion and blood clots in his right eye.

On Feb. 20, 2020, Judge Charles S. Temple found Diole incompetent to stand trial.  In his order, the judge said Diole was born in Congo and moved to the United States at the age of 10.  He lived with his parents in Manchester until age 15 when he left home, claiming he was tired of his father’s abusive behavior.  He went into the custody of the state Department of Children, Youth and Families and was placed in foster and group homes.  He attended Concord High School through the 11th grade.

As an adult, Diole primarily lived in Manchester but has been homeless for most of his adult life and one time was living in the Valley Cemetery.  He has not worked regularly, has used marijuana since age 15, consumed alcohol since age 17, and abused heroin to an unknown extent.

Since October 2012, he has been hospitalized three times for mental health issues and has undergone several mental health evaluations.

 In the second-degree assault case, he was evaluated by two doctors:  One found him competent to stand trial while the other diagnosed him with schizophrenia and needing immediate treatment.  That physician, Dr. Mathilde Pelaprat, said until Diole receives adequate psychiatric care he is unlikely to achieve competency.  She recommended a re-evaluation of his competency once his mental health symptoms stabilized.

In a footnote, the judge wrote that from the evaluations it appears as though each doctor interviewed a different person. “This aligns with Dr. Pelaprat’s testimony that individuals with a psychiatric disorder can show variability in presentation and intensity of their symptoms.  It may also demonstrate that the defendant’s condition has deteriorated while he is in jail.”

About this Author

Pat Grossmith

Pat Grossmith is a freelance reporter.