Teenager sentenced to 14 years in prison

An Elizabethtown teen who admitted he sexually assaulted a middle school girl has been sentenced to serve 14 years in a state prison.

Four of the years handed down to William A. Connor, 10665 E. Legal Tender Road, were suspended by Bartholomew Superior Court 1 Judge James Worton during a hearing last week.

The judge also ordered the defendant to pay $6,000 restitution to the girl, as well as a variety of court costs and fees, court records state.

The victim, who took the stand during the sentencing hearing, told investigators the attacks began in the summer of 2013, according to a probable-cause affidavit filed by Bartholomew County Sheriff’s Detective Kevin Abner.

She told police Connor assaulted her on a number of occasions the summer after she had completed seventh grade and in April and May of last year, Abner wrote.

The girl, who is now in high school, also stated she was struck during the assaults, the affidavit stated.

When questioned by investigators, Connor denied he had hit the girl, claiming instead that she struck him, Abner wrote.

Worton described the matter as a particularly sad case, since the victim will “have to suffer significant consequences for several years to come.”

Although Connor was 17 when he was apprehended in late winter, he was waived into adult court and ordered held on $250,000 bond, court records state.

Three weeks after his Feb. 28 arrest on two counts of criminal deviate conduct as Class B felonies, Connor turned 18 while incarcerated at the Bartholomew County Jail.

About six months later, on Sept. 21, Worton accepted a plea agreement that allowed one of the two felonies to be dropped in exchange for a guilty plea to the other count.

The judge noted that Connor suffers from a mental health condition, a factor in not handing down a stiffer sentence.

However, Worton also cited several aggravating factors that include a history of criminal or delinquent behavior, as well as significant harm inflicted on the victim.

Several conditions were laid down in Worton’s sentencing order that include an extended no-contact order with the victim, as well as a requirement that Connor register as a sex offender.

However, the judge also requested that Connor receive treatment for his mental health issues through the Indiana Department of Corrections.

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Mark Webber is a reporter for The Republic. He can be reached at mwebber@therepublic.com or 812-379-5636.