Corey Henry is free after pleading guilty Monday to a misdemeanor charge of battery rather than going before a jury that could have convicted him of a sexual assault charge resulting in a possible 10 to 25 years in prison.
A trial was set to begin Monday, and the plea came after Ohio County Circuit Judge David Sims released 30 prospective jurors who had waited behind closed doors for the jury selection process.
Henry's case has been on the court docket since his October 2012 arrest on allegations of abduction with intent to defile and second-degree sexual assault.
Corey Henry, accompanied by defense Attorney J.C. Ratliff, pleads guilty to a
misdemeanor charge of
Monday in Ohio County Circuit Court
The original complaint alleged Henry, 30, of Wheeling, abducted a woman from a bar and transported her to an Elm Grove residence where he sexually assaulted her. Police said Henry and the accuser, a 32-year-old Wheeling woman, were at the same bar Oct. 5, but left the bar in separate vehicles.
Later that night, Henry and the woman were reportedly at a second bar at the same time.
On Jan. 3, Sims dismissed one of the charges, citing what he called "a fatal flaw" in the wording of the abduction count in the indictment.
At Monday's plea hearing, Henry submitted his plea as per an agreement between his attorney, J.C. Ratliff, and assistant Prosecuting Attorney Shawn Turak.
Sims sentenced Henry to one year in jail, with credit for the seven months already served.
Sims suspended the remaining sentence in favor of two years probation, during which time Henry is forbidden to have contact with the accuser.
Henry must also refrain from drinking alcoholic beverages and not break any laws.