PORT CLINTON, Ohio (USA Today) — An Ohio man was sentenced to five years in prison Thursday after pleading guilty to a rape in which a video of the August incident was recorded by the victim and shared on the social media application Snapchat.
James D. Allen, 78, of Marblehead was sentenced by Judge Bruce Winters in Ottawa County Common Pleas Court.
Allen is also required to register as a sex offender every 90 days for life and will be subject to five years of post-release control if released from prison on parole. He was given credit for 123 days served in the Ottawa County Detention Facility.
Allen pleaded guilty in October to first-degree felony rape and admitted to the incident, including providing alcohol to the 20-year-old victim, substantially impairing her ability to consent.
Allen claimed in court that because he also consumed a lot of alcohol, he does not remember everything that happened, but said he later saw the video. He said he was not aware at the time that it was being recorded.
“Once I was shown the video by my attorney, I realized that it was completely true,” Allen said Thursday. “At that point, I took full responsibility for my actions and I still do. There’s no doubt in my mind that I committed a crime against (the victim) and there’s no justification for it.”
According to the Danbury Township Police Department, authorities were first called to perform a welfare check at a township residence in the early morning hours of Aug. 8.
Detective Sgt. Mark Meisler said everything initially appeared to be fine when police arrived for the welfare check.
Meisler said police later started receiving information from as far away as Texas regarding a possible sex offense at the residence.
Two videos recorded on Snapchat, a cellphone application for sharing image and video messages, were forwarded to the Danbury Township police.
Meisler described the videos depictions as very “clear.”
He said that, based on the videos, police returned to the residence and arrested Allen without incident. The victim also was interviewed at that time.
Ottawa County Prosecutor James VanEerten said the victim agreed to Allen's plea deal, which carried a mandatory minimum sentence of three years in prison.
Allen would be 83 when his prison sentence is concluded.
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