Prep school grad wants sexual assault sentence suspended

November 26, 2018

CONCORD, N.H. (AP) — A New Hampshire prep school graduate convicted of sexually assaulting a 15-year-old classmate in 2015 has asked a judge to suspend the remainder of his one-year jail sentence as he prepares for the second of two appeals at the state Supreme Court.

The court earlier this month upheld Owen Labrie’s felony conviction of using a computer to lure an underage student for sex, requiring him to register as a sex offender. The St. Paul’s School graduate also was convicted of three sexual assault charges and endangering the welfare of a child, all misdemeanors. Labrie’s second appeal, scheduled Wednesday, asks for a new trial, citing ineffective counsel.

Labrie, 23, of Tunbridge, Vermont, served two months in jail for curfew violations in 2016. His lawyer said he’s complied with his bail conditions, which included a stringent curfew.

“Mr. Labrie has essentially been under house arrest for over two years,” his attorney, Jaye Rancourt, said in court documents. “He has been required to wear an ankle monitoring bracelet for approximately thirty months” costing over $6,000.

Rancourt said Labrie recently found a full-time job. “Between the notoriety of his case, his very strict bail conditions, and his home confinement in rural Vermont a great distance from many employment opportunities which, with travel time, could not be completed within the terms of his restrictive bail conditions, it had been very difficult for Mr. Labrie to find employment. ”

If his sentence is not suspended, Rancourt asked that Labrie be permitted to attend a work release program or home confinement.

Prosecutors want Labrie to serve the rest of his term, saying in court paperwork, that “the goals of sentencing have not been met.” They said they also contacted the victim’s family, which objected to the sentence proposal.

Both sides have asked a judge for a hearing.

Labrie was accused in 2014 of assaulting the girl as part of a “Senior Salute” competition among upperclassman seeking to have sex with younger students. Her parents sued in 2016, shortly after Labrie was convicted and a settlement was finalized earlier this year.

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