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Archive for Thursday, June 24, 2010

Victim testifies to details of last week’s attack on west Lawrence bicycle path

Lawrence Police detective says defendant confessed to the crime

The woman was visiting her host family when 30-year-old William Nichols pulled her off her bike and attempted to rape her.

June 24, 2010

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A 23-year-old woman broke down in tears Thursday afternoon as she testified about being brutally attacked last week while riding her bicycle in western Lawrence.

A preliminary hearing was conducted in Douglas County District Court in the case of William Nichols, 30, Lawrence. He’s accused of aggravated kidnapping, attempted rape and aggravated battery.

The woman told the court she was riding her bike June 16 on the bike path between the Youth Sports Complex soccer fields and Clinton Lake, when about 20 minutes into her ride, Nichols attacked her.

“When I got next to him, he looked at me and just grabbed me,” she said. “His arm was around my neck.”

The woman said she is originally from Hungary and was in Lawrence to visit her host family. She said she had used the bike path at least five times before.

Douglas County District Attorney Charles Branson asked her to describe her attack.

After she was pulled from her bike, she said, the defendant pulled her farther from the path into an area with bushes and tall grass. She said she was on her stomach while he sat on her back.

She said he slid down to lie on her and then fondled her.

“I knew he wanted to rape me,” she said.

She said that’s when she bit his arm. She then told the court that he flipped her over and began punching her in the face.

“I saw that I was bleeding everywhere; I asked him, ‘What are you doing?’” she said. The woman then told the court, “He said, ‘I don’t know.’”

She said he held a knife to her throat, and she grabbed it to keep him from stabbing her. “I thought, ‘I’m going to die,’” she said.

She said that’s when two young men came down the path.

“I screamed, ‘Help me; he’s going to kill me,’” she said.

She said Nichols looked at the men, looked at her and then ran.

The woman softly cried throughout her testimony. While she gave her statement, Nichols sat quietly with his defense attorney, occasionally taking notes.

The woman left the courtroom with a man and woman, hugged the woman and sobbed.

From a distance she appeared uninjured, walking and talking without difficulty. Up close, she had bruises on her face that appeared to be fading.

She told the court that she suffered a broken nose, a broken bone in her cheek, bruising, and had stitches on her neck and hand.

The only other witness to testify at the preliminary hearing was Detective Jack Cross with the Lawrence Police Department. He testified that Nichols confessed to attacking the woman almost immediately after he was arrested.

Cross said Nichols told him that he traveled to the path that day with the intention of groping a woman. Cross said he asked Nichols why he had a knife, and was told that it was “to intimidate and control her.”

Nichols confessed to groping several other women at different locations, Cross said, and that this was his first time he had groped a woman along the bike path.

Cross told the court he asked Nichols why he picked this particular woman. “He thought he could control her,” Cross said.

The detective noted that Nichols said he wanted to cause the victim pain and embarrass her, and that he got an adrenaline rush and sexual gratification from doing this.

Cross said Nichols could recall some intricate details of the day but then said he couldn’t remember initiating the attack, but he could recall being on her, beating her.

The detective said he did not believe Nichols was mentally ill.

“He was very articulate,” Cross said.

Cross said he believes the defendant went to St. Marys High School and took some online college courses, studying criminal justice.

Judge Peggy Kittel ruled that there was enough evidence to hold Nichols over for trial.

A trial date was set for Sept. 3. A motions hearing is scheduled for Aug. 30.

Comments

Bob Kraxner 3 years, 9 months ago

Good thing it was a man instead of a spear-chucker hunting for food, she might have been eaten for dinner...

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TrooGrit 3 years, 9 months ago

No argument from me. I say if you want to life by the sword, then die by it. No harm, ho foul. Perhaps if we started executing people in place while committing crimes, we could go back to a more peaceful existence? I know...Utopian fantasy. Everyone out there growing uneasy in their seats thinking, eww. Think about it, anyway. I mean, after all, when the guy was caught, he told 'em what he was doing? Save the cost of a trial, and execute a troll. Seems like such a simple thing.

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budtugly 3 years, 9 months ago

Independant1...sounds like a good method to help rid the scum of the earth. People say that the death penalty doesn't deter crime...it deters the same SOB from committing another murder. Tell me where this young lady would have ended up if those young joggers timing had been 5 minutes later. Too bad the cops couldn't have taken him out right there..save the taxpayers some cash.

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TrooGrit 3 years, 9 months ago

Still...it's a system a cuzin could like...I'm jest sayin'.

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independant1 3 years, 9 months ago

in Russia A criminal that had been victimizing the community was finally caught red handed. The citizens, mostly women, bound the perp and took him to the police station. Since the breakup and dissolution of KGB the local police, by default, have to perform a lot of policing they were not previously tasked with in past. The chief addressed the citizens with perp in tow, what do you want us to do about it? We have no time to deal with this. Take him out and beat him, don't kill him just beat him.

They did just that.

When one receives death penalty in Russia the convicted one is placed in a small cell. They do not know the time or place of execution, when the penalty is carried out, could be a day, a month or more, the small trap door of cell opens and the convicted one receives a bullet to the head. There are not 10years of exhaustive appeals in the russian system of justice.

Moral - justice is relative.

Note to auty, no I ain't talking bout cousins so chill.

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equalaccessprivacy 3 years, 10 months ago

Sure that isn't a status conference versus a motion hearing four days before trial?

This article makes for upsetting reading. Personally, I don't find Lawrence a safe place to enjoy solitude in public as a woman-- and that's about the worst thing I could say about anyplace anywhere too.

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TrooGrit 3 years, 10 months ago

Bottom line is this: No woman, of any nationality, should have to take the stand, and accuse any scumbag of anything. All of you 'free air' idiots are just that, idiots. This woman is a total victim in this case, and this perp, should have his wang cut off. I'm sorry, you liberal elitist snob arsholes who don't agree. You are the problem. You ARE the problem!

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igby 3 years, 10 months ago

This guys not all there. He wandered on Mass. street for a month or so, making lewd comments to women and mumbling to himself. He belongs in the pen where he can be watched for the rest of his life. However, until he did this crime, his conduct was not any different than all the drunks and they're vulgar rants on Mass. st late at night.

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daddax98 3 years, 10 months ago

looks like he has some facial injuries, hope those two guys whipped his arse or better yet someone at the jail is giving him the business!

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JMG 3 years, 10 months ago

I thought the LJWorld's policy was to not name suspects/defendants in sex crime cases until they are convicted? Why the change of approach in this case?

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workinghard 3 years, 10 months ago

Thank heavens the two young men that rescued her didn't ask if she was a US citizen first. LG40 probably would have walked on.

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lgreen17 3 years, 10 months ago

"Douglas County District Attorney Charles Branson asked her to describe her attack."

Wow I'm shocked, the elected District Attorney was actually was in a courtroom this week. News Flash! DA does his job!

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autie 3 years, 10 months ago

I was just glad to see his last name wasn't 4ever.

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rodentgirl16 3 years, 10 months ago

Holy cow, I totally know who this guy is now. I knew the name sounded familiar. The Facebook blocking jokes about "Bill N" totally make sense now.

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Clark Coan 3 years, 10 months ago

This guy went to high school in St. Mary's, the Kansas capital of far right extremists such as Richard Keyes III who "left St. Marys to join the separatist Republic of Texas. When its leaders surrendered in a siege by the police, Keyes vanished into the mountains. Caught months later, he is now serving 90 years in prison on charges that include kidnapping and burglary."

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tomatogrower 3 years, 10 months ago

To the victim, if she or her host family is reading this. Most people in Lawrence are so sorry this happened to you. We, as a community will work to see that he is put away in prison for a long time. Please realize that most people in Lawrence and the US are not like this creep who hurt you and not like the poster on here called lawrenceguy40. The majority of people are like the 2 young heros who came along at the right time and did the right thing. We want this guy off the streets, so he can't hurt anyone else. He is obviously a serial killer in the making, and thankfully he failed to make you his first murder victim; although the trauma will be rough on you for a long time. We at least now have a chance to protect other women. Thank you for your testimony. And we are behind you all the way , and hopefully this guy will be put away for life. Please to not be afraid to come back to Lawrence, and be strong.

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Azure_Attitude 3 years, 10 months ago

I would say lawrenceguy not only hates law enforment but hates women as well. His posts wreak of misogyny. I imagine he strikes people as a complete nutjob in person just as much as he does on-line and therefore doesn't get any and the DSB is affecting his brain.

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somedude20 3 years, 10 months ago

Having seen the posts that LG40 leaves behind I am guessing that he gets some "gratification" of his own by trolling

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workinghard 3 years, 10 months ago

In case you didn't catch LG40's up above "He is a US citizen. Why should her rights come before his?" To think a woman brutally attacked should have less rights than the attacker just because she is not a US citizen is idiotic. Personally I'm ashamed he is a US citizen.

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MacHeath 3 years, 10 months ago

Good thing they have this guy, he is a psycho killer waiting to happen. They need to figure out a way to monitor this dude when he gets out.

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TrooGrit 3 years, 10 months ago

Just like lawrenceguy40...they are both communists hell bent on installing a lawless society on us all! Do NOT feed the trolls!

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somebodynew 3 years, 10 months ago

@workinghard - if you follow LG40's posts you will quickly discover he just hates anything to do with law enforcement, especially if they actually did something good, like helping to catch this guy.

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workinghard 3 years, 10 months ago

Beginning to wonder if LG40 knows this guy? Saying liberals just want to use this to bash the USA is unbelievable. Nobody else thinks of politics when reading about this horrible attack. One also has to wonder about LG40's mental capabilities. Think of it this way, we are showing the rest of the world how we would like to see attacks on our citizens in their country handled if it will make you feel better.

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marcez0z 3 years, 10 months ago

Went to high school went to high school with this idiot the man looked just as crazy then as he does now! Burn Billy Burn!!

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Majestic42 3 years, 10 months ago

Are the Boondock Saints still up for hire?

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gvnobas 3 years, 10 months ago

Fellow citizens:

Sterilization.

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bearded_gnome 3 years, 10 months ago

oh, he's such a responsible man, ain't he just!

gets a sexual charge out of doing such things? take his daughter away from him now.


Jackpot: BG that's a dead horse. Has an address on N. Mich. when he was booked.

---dude/dudette, that's why I asked, but "having an address" doesn't necessarily mean he didn't come to our town attracted by the Henderson flophouse.
but seriously, I was just asking. don't be so defensive.

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macon47 3 years, 10 months ago

what happened to all of our love for the diversiity of lawrence? you guys are sure singing a differnt tune kinda lke all the muslim lovers after thier own loved ones are killed by them

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jayhawk2003 3 years, 10 months ago

William, sick freak, I hate you so much. I hope that you Rot in Hell for doing that to the girl. I hope your daughter never has to see your sick sadistic self..

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bearded_gnome 3 years, 10 months ago

okay, haven't read all the articles on this: William Nichols have a connection to the drunk/druggie shelter downtown??? I heard news reports that he recently came to Lawrence.

if so, make them pay all restitution to lpd, the victim, lmh, etc.


The victim, who was visibly emotional as she testified, suffered broken bones in her face and lacerations to her neck and hand.

---that's a lot of pain there, and then the psychological trauma.

dear young lady, I am sincerely sorry you suffered this in my community. I hope you will find good counseling to help you cope with the trauma you experienced. I am so glad that two young men came along and prevented Nichols from harming you further.

you are right to continue with your life and plans, instead of letting Nichols cause even more trouble. but please don't ignore the psychological trauma.

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LadyJ 3 years, 10 months ago

Evidently lawrenceguy40 made the removed remark. First, we don't know what country the victim is from, but what difference does it make, the crime was committed here and he has to deal with U.S. justice. Put one of your family in her place and see how you would feel then. Of course you might be one of those guys that figures it's always the woman's fault. Seriously, you need to be disappeareded.

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lawrenceguy40 3 years, 10 months ago

So you all believe that if this situation were reversed, and William were attacked while on vacation in hungary, the hungarian justice system would trip over itself to speedily prosecute one of their citizens, so a US citizen could continue on their travels? You are all crazy if you believe that would ever even get to trial, speedily or not. I guess you liberals just see this as an opportunity for a bit of USA bashing on a very small international stage.

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opinionated1 3 years, 10 months ago

The amount of ignorance in the last post is so thick you could cut it with a knife. She is the victim, why should her plans for this summer change because a scumbag attacked her with the intention of raping her and hurting while she was bike riding? There is no risk to the justice system in fact it's your constitutional right to a speedy trial and this is pretty speedy to start. I would counter that it's a triumph for the legal system. P.S. He admitted his guild when interviewed... he's guilty done deal.

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bigmike 3 years, 10 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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lawrenceguy40 3 years, 10 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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TrooGrit 3 years, 10 months ago

no probation, just a cut to the jugular. This ass clown deserves no better. I wish those guys would have shot him through his very thick temporal lobe,.

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