Taxi driver charged with rape, other charges in Cornelia incident

By Rob Moore


A Toccoa man was arrested in Athens Tuesday, charged in a February rape in Cornelia.

Lester Hoyte, 35, is charged with rape, false imprisonment, sodomy, and battery in the Feb. 12 case.

The 17-year-old female victim said she was offered a ride home by a taxi driver about 6 p.m. Feb. 12, which she accepted. She was at Habersham County Shopping Center at the time he approached her and he then took her to a secluded location and raped her, said Cornelia Police Chief Chad Smith.

Smith said officers believe this was an isolated incident, but the case remains under investigation with the possibility of more charges to come.

Hoyte was arrested by the Athens-Clarke County Police Department on April 20.

Smith said no additional information is being released due to the ongoing investigation.

Habersham County Shopping Center is located on 441 Bypass at Level Grove Road in Cornelia and includes grocery and retail shops.