Jacob Blake accepts plea bargain, dropping sexual assault charges
Blake, who is recovering from a police shooting in August, denying guilt says he wants to 'see my children quicker'
Jacob Blake, a Black man recovering after being shot in the back by Wisconsin police officers earlier this year, had been facing charges of sexual assault prior to his shooting.
Prosecutors decided to drop two of those charges on Friday in exchange for a guilty plea to lesser charges.
Blake, 29, back in May was accused of one count of third-degree sexual assault and one count of criminal trespass, according to New York Times. A warrant was issued for his arrest in July, two months before he was shot in the back by police in Kenosha, Wisconsin while responding to a domestic complaint.
In the case of sexual assault, Blake’s lawyer, Patrick Cafferty, was able to make a deal with Kenosha prosecutors. The deal stemmed in part due to the accusing party not being cooperative with prosecutors, including Walworth County district attorney Zeke Wiedenfeld.
“This was an agreement reached partly because the victim in this matter was not responsive to the subpoena to appear in court,” Wiedenfeld said.
As a result, the third-degree sexual assault and criminal trespass counts were dropped by prosecutors and Blake agreed to plead guilty to two counts of disorderly conduct. Blake will receive two years probation and serve no jail time.
Cafferty stated that “this was a fair resolution of these charges.” However, as Blake stated his allocution for the disorderly conduct via a virtual court appearance, he maintained his innocence.
“Honestly, your honor, although I pled guilty to this, I don’t consider myself to be guilty,” Black said. “I pretty much took this opportunity to get to see my children quicker.”
The shooting left Blake partially paralyzed from the waist down and sparked protests in the city. His shooting followed numerous incidents of police violence that ended in deaths of Black Americans, such as Breonna Taylor and George Floyd, sparking a summer of demonstrations.
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