MIAMI COUNTY — A Piqua man will spend three years in prison and register as a Tier III sex offender for the rest of his life for sexually assaulting a handicapped woman in Troy in 2018.
William A. Leroy Jr., 27, entered an Alford plea to an amended charge of third-degree felony sexual assault last month.
The court found him guilty of the charge. On Monday, Leroy was sentenced before Judge Stacy Wall in Miami County Common Pleas Court.
Leroy was originally charged with first-degree felony rape, which carries a 3-11 year prison sentence. A joint plea agreement of three years in prison was reached between public defense attorneys Joe Fulker and Stephen King and Miami County Prosecutors. Leroy will be placed on mandatory post-release control for five years.
An Alford plea is a guilty plea in criminal court in which a defendant doesn’t admit to the criminal act, yet fears the consequences of the original charges.
According to Troy Police Department, the female victim, in her 30s, was handicapped. The victim has since passed away. The incident was first reported on June 22, 2018, by a caregiver of the victim. Detectives recovered DNA evidence linking Leroy to the incident, which occurred in the Imperial Court apartment complex.
Leroy apologized to the court for his “selfish, unacceptable choices.” Leroy said he now has a new lease on life through his religion and said he has changed for the better and has learned from his mistakes.
Miami County Prosecutor Janna Parker asked the court to honor the joint plea agreement and to consider the victim impact statement written by the victim’s caregiver.
Judge Wall said the statement included how the caregiver knew something had happened due to the victim’s tone of voice following the incident.
Wall said Leroy took advantage of the woman’s mental disability. Wall said Leroy took away the victim’s pride, security and independence. She also told Leroy that he may have found God in jail, but he still failed to take ownership of his actions through the Alford plea, which she said “was quite telling.” Wall said his failure to take ownership of his actions would likely hinder his rehabilitation in prison.
Leroy was granted 501 days of jail credit.
In other news:
• Gerald Thornton, 58, of Dayton, entered a guilty plea to fifth-degree felony theft for stealing thousands of dollars from an elderly woman in West Milton who was known to him.
Thornton agreed to plea guilty by bill of information to the charge. Thornton also agreed to waive the dollar amount limit owed to the victim in exchange for the lowest felony charge.
Parker requested the waiver of restitution limit be on the record due to the theft of funds could be as much as $20,000, which could be a third-degree felony theft charge. Thornton will be sentenced on March 2.
According to the report filed by the West Milton Police Department, a relative reported that his mother was confused on why she was missing $20,000 from her bank account. The officer added up the ATM withdrawals dating back from June 2019, which totaled $20,010.
Reach Melanie Yingst at firstname.lastname@example.org
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