GREENFIELD — A Fortville man will serve time on probation for assaulting a woman — an act he admitted to after prosecutors dismissed the rape charge he had faced.
A judge ordered that Justin Goble, 34, 15 S. Main St., Fortville, serve two years on probation after pleading guilty to one Level 6 felony count of criminal confinement and one Class B misdemeanor of battery.
Goble was arrested in early 2016 after a woman came forward, accusing him of sexual assault.
Both the defendant and victim have intellectual disabilities; but prosecutors said they were confident Goble understood what he had done was wrong, officials said.
The victim told investigators she had recently met Goble and was at his Fortville apartment one night when he became angry because the internet wasn’t working. Goble then turned violent, held her down and assaulted her, the woman told police, according to court documents.
Prosecutors initially filed a Level 3 felony count of rape against Goble in addition to the two lesser counts.
Goble pleaded guilty days before his case was set to go to trial.
This week, Hancock County Superior Court 1 Judge Terry Snow ordered Goble to serve two years on probation for the Level 6 criminal confinement charge and 180 days for the Class B misdemeanor charge.
Those sentences will be served at the same time.
If Goble violates probation, he will spend the remainder of his sentence in the Hancock County Jail.
The Level 6 felony he pleaded guilty to carries a maximum penalty of 2½ years; the Class B misdemeanor carries a maximum penalty of 180 days.
Prosecutors said they opted to drop the rape charge Goble had faced because they believed he would then admit he was guilty of the other accusations filed; they worried testifying in court would be traumatizing to the victim and wanted to keep the case from appearing before a jury, they said.
The victim did not appear in Hancock County Superior Court 1 Wednesday to speak during Goble’s sentencing. She’d expressed fears about being face to face with Goble again and chose to let prosecutors express her feelings to the judge, Chief Deputy Prosecutor Marie Castetter said during the hearing.
A no-contact order between Goble and the victim was put in place when Goble was arrested, and Castetter asked the judge to keep the order in place for the duration of the man’s sentence.
Snow agreed. He also ordered that Goble complete anger management and probation department monitoring that is traditionally meant for sex offenders.