Rape case closed, plea deal accepted

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HANCOCK COUNTY — After county citizens in a jury trial could not determine his innocence or guilt in a Level 1 felony rape case, a McCordsville man had a plea agreement accepted in Hancock County Circuit Court late last week.

The Hancock County Prosecutor’s Office and officials for defendant Christopher Lee Hargraves entered into a plea agreement earlier this summer. The deal however needed to be approved by the court, Judge Scott Sirk, who did so Thursday, June 30 during an official sentencing hearing.

As part of the plea deal, Hargraves, 20, McCordsville admitted guilt to a Level 3 felony count of confinement, a Level 6 felony count of pointing a firearm along with two misdemeanor charges of having a handgun without a license and possession of marijuana.

Hargraves was given an eight-year term for the charges with all sentences running concurrent. A year-and-a-half of the term is to be executed in prison, some 556 days, while the remainder of the sentence, nearly six-and-a-half years, 2,364 days, is to be served through the Hancock County Probation Department. Court documents state Hargraves received 550 days of jail credit, and he is no longer listed as an inmate in the county jail.

Sirk determined Hargraves shall serve on sex offender specific probation with the first 730 days while on Community Corrections Home Detention as a condition of probation, followed by 1,634 days of formal probation. Hargraves is also ordered to comply with all terms and conditions of the program and his probation.

In the first trial, held in December, 2021, Hargraves was found guilty on two misdemeanor and one Level 6 felony charge, but a jury could not determine guilt or innocence on six other charges, including two counts of Level 1 felony rape from an alleged incident in September, 2020.

While officials with the prosecutor’s office had plans for a second trial on the remaining counts, including the rape charges, after discussing options with the victim, the plea agreement was agreed upon, prosecutor Brent Eaton said.

The deal also called for the court to vacate the jury verdicts from the first trial.

Part of the deal called for the remaining charges not addressed in the first trial to also be dismissed. A no-contact order will remain in place with the victim during the duration of the term, including all direct or indirect contact with the woman, the plea document state.

The plea agreement also stated Hargraves must register as a sex offender for 10 years.

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