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Archive for Friday, March 28, 2008

Lawrence man pleads guilty in assault case

March 28, 2008

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Man gets plea deal in sexual assault

A Lawrence man pleads guilty to two charges stemming from a sexual assault last December. Enlarge video

A Lawrence man pleaded guilty Thursday to two charges stemming from a sexual assault last December.

Benjamin A. Meeks, 21, entered the pleas to aggravated battery and aggravated sexual battery, under a plea agreement reached with the Douglas County District Attorney's Office. He had been scheduled to stand trial on Monday on one count of rape.

Meeks admitted to district Judge Michael Malone that he drove a woman from Club Axis, 821 Iowa, to his apartment in the 2400 block of Alabama, where he struck her in the face and sexually assaulted her.

Assistant District Attorney Amy McGowan said the woman suffered severe facial and head injuries as well as a possible bone chip in her hand. The victim also has post concussion syndrome, McGowan said.

Meeks faces up to 172 months in prison for aggravated battery and 34 months in prison for aggravated sexual battery. His attorney, Kevin Babbit, said he intends to seek a psychological evaluation for Meeks before sentencing on May 9.

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