• Scott Bush takes stand in Windermere rape case, jury starts deliberations


    WINDERMERE, Fla. - A jury will return to the Orange County courthouse Thursday to decide the fate of a man accused of raping two girls when they were young.

    The jury began deliberating the fate of the Orange County businessman.

    Scott Bush told an Orange County jury on Wednesday that he never raped two young girls in his home years ago.  The girls in the case are his relatives.

    Bush was calm and straightforward until it was the prosecutor's turn to question him.

    "I wasn't hugging them or groping them," Bush said on the stand.

    A defiant Bush took the stand in his own defense and said the stories the young women told on the stand, and wrote in their diaries, were all lies.

    "So it is possible that they did write about you sexually abusing them?" a prosecutor asked Bush.

    "Of course it's possible," said Bush. "It doesn't mean it's true."

    Investigators said it took years for Bush's alleged crimes to come to light because his friend, the former police chief of Windermere, covered them up.

    Former Windermere Police Chief Daniel Saylor, who was convicted of four felonies because of the alleged cover up, was called by the defense.

    Saylor denied tampering with evidence to protect Bush, even though he was recorded telling an officer to burn investigative notes in the case.

    When the prosecutor's turn came to question Saylor, he denied the charges that he pleaded to claiming he had no choice.

    "I have a daughter. My name was in the gutter. I was destroyed," said Saylor.

    Afterward, the prosecutor told the jury that Saylor lied.

    "The only truthful thing he said on that witness stand was, 'My name is Dan Saylor,'" said prosecutor Deb Barra.

    One of the few times Bush showed any emotion during the whole trial was while talking about the death of his father 15 years ago.

    When an alleged victim said she was suicidal over his abuse, he denied the allegations.

    "No sir, I did nothing," said Bush.

    When Barra questioned Bush he became combative almost immediately, closer to the angry man the alleged victims said they knew him to be.

    "I've been going through this for about 15 years. Every time I try to extend the olive branch something else bad happens, OK?" said Bush.

    Bush claims that one of the alleged victims admitted to making up the allegations. But he was evasive when the prosecutors asked him to find the police report backing that up.

    "Do you have all the reports?" Bush asked Barra.

    "This is not about me," said Barra.

    Prosecutors said the alleged victims never backed off their allegations.

    WFTV legal analyst Bill Sheaffer said Bush's answers didn't help him.

    "He was very defensive, evasive and in a lot of them somewhat argumentative. It doesn't look good as far as a jury's concerned," said Sheaffer.

    Bush also admitted to the prosecution that he had read some of the alleged victims' diaries.

    "So it is possible that they did write about you sexually abusing them? You just didn't see it?" Barra asked Bush.

    "I'm not going to answer that question. That's ridiculous. You know, of course it's possible," said Bush.

    "Thank you. I have no further questions," said Barra.

    "It doesn't mean it's true," said Bush.

    On Wednesday afternoon, the prosecution and defense completed their closing arguments and the jury began deliberating Bush's fate.

    The jury was dismissed for the evening at about 5:15 p.m. and will return to continue their deliberations Thursday morning.

    Saylor is on probation, and Bush faces life in prison if he is convicted.

    Previous Stories:

    Next Up:

  • Headline Goes Here

    Scott Bush takes stand in Windermere rape case, jury starts deliberations