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38-year-old Dr. Travis Birkhead is charged with felony rape or attempted rape and misdemeanor assault (October 2022 mug shot courtesy of the Boone County Sheriff's Department)

High-profile Columbia rape case has been delayed

38-year-old Dr. Travis Birkhead is charged with rape or attempted rape and misdemeanor assault (October 2022 mug shot courtesy of the Boone County Sheriff’s Department)

The trial of a Columbia physician charged with raping a woman he met at a bar on the Business Loop last October has been continued.

38-year-old Dr. Travis Birkhead is charged with rape or attempted rape and misdemeanor assault for the alleged October 2022 incident involving a woman he met at the Black and Gold tavern. The trial was scheduled to begin this morning, but online court records show Boone County Circuit Judge Kevin Crane has approved Dr. Birkhead’s motion for a continuance.

939 the Eagle News has been in the courtroom for several of Dr. Birkhead’s hearings. His defense attorney, Kevin O’Brien, has told the court that the surveillance video referenced by Columbia Police in television news reports simply showed Birkhead’s vehicle at the bar and nothing else. Counselor O’Brien has said in open court that the woman wouldn’t leave Birkhead’s house that night, saying she “acted crazy.” O’Brien has said there was no sexual assault and that it was Birkhead who had to call CPD to ask the woman to leave his home.

Boone County prosecutors see if differently: they’ve told Judge Crane in open court that Dr. Birkhead is  a danger to the community, adding he has a history of threatening people. They’ve also said that Birkhead’s ex-wife, a different woman, is terrified of him.

Dr. Birkhead was released from the Boone County jail in May, after posting a $50,000 surety bond. He is hooked up to GPS monitoring.

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