Accused of rape, Grand Lake man sentenced to 2 years probation, time served for January assault
Newly discovered evidence led DA's office to re-evaluate case
A man accused of assaulting a woman in January was sentenced to two years of unsupervised probation Tuesday after pleading guilty to two misdemeanors.
On July 30, Frank Webb, 37, of Grand Lake was sentenced to two years of unsupervised probation and 183 days in jail, though he was given credit for 183 days already served.
Webb’s sentencing came after he pleaded guilty to single counts of disorderly conduct and third-degree assault after working out a plea agreement with the 14th Judicial District Attorney’s Office.
Under the terms of the agreement, 14 other charges were dismissed, including two counts of second-degree kidnapping, six counts of sexual assault, one count of second-degree assault, one count of extortion, two counts of felony menacing, one count of false imprisonment and a single count of criminal mischief.
Court officials noted that Webb also will be required to pay fines and court costs, and he must undergo a domestic violence evaluation and follow any recommend treatment.
The alleged incident that led to Webb’s arrest occurred from Jan. 25-28. According to court documents, the woman told authorities Webb’s attacks began Jan. 25 when he shoved her against a door and choked her with his forearm.
After a struggle, the woman told investigators, she fought back, got away from Webb and locked herself in a bedroom. Webb then allegedly kicked the door open, threatened the woman with further physical violence and a knife, and sexually assaulted her.
The woman told investigators Webb assaulted her again on Jan. 28 after another altercation. In that incident, Webb allegedly grabbed the woman by the hair before slamming her head into the floor multiple times.
The woman also told investigators Webb forced her to sign over the titles to her vehicles and trailer home while again threatening her with a knife. Webb is further alleged to have sexually assaulted woman for hours that night.
The following day, the woman sought help and reported the alleged assaults to authorities. Webb was arrested and charged with multiple felonies and misdemeanors.
Officials from the district attorney’s office explained Webb’s plea agreement, noting that new evidence was presented by Webb’s defense attorneys in early July.
“This new evidence raised substantial questions about the courtroom viability of certain testimony, and for that reason other more serious charges were dismissed,” the DA’s office said in a statement.
For his part, District Attorney Matt Karzen offered an extended comment on the topic.
“Prosecutors have an unyielding ethical duty to remain loyal to this highest burden of proof, and in this case, the newly discovered evidence required we re-evaluate the case,” he said. “The cold, hard evidentiary realities of a criminal trial sometimes require our prosecutors to make difficult and painful choices in order to adhere to their ethical mandates.
“When that circumstance arises, we do our best to achieve whatever justice we can. Here, the resolution brings closure and the protection of a two-year restraining order to the victim, and it will prohibit Mr. Webb, as a convicted domestic violence offender, from possession of a firearm under federal law. Under the circumstances, the disposition represents the best available balance between public safety, victim safety and dignity, the defendant’s constitutional rights, and a prosecutor’s ethical responsibilities.”
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