Crime: Brad Cooper sentenced to probation, resigns Johnson County office - PressFrom - US
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CrimeBrad Cooper sentenced to probation, resigns Johnson County office

21:40  17 july  2019
21:40  17 july  2019 Source:   indystar.com

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Johnson County Prosecutor Brad Cooper apologized in court Wednesday and said that he is taking "full responsibility" for crime in a domestic abuse case that has forced him out of the elected post he's held for a decade.

Cooper was sentenced to 540 days of probation by Hancock Superior Court Judge Dan E. Marshall, a special judge handling the case. He avoided all jail time.

Cooper turned in his ID, his keys and had his access to county computers revoked.

Brad Cooper sentenced to probation, resigns Johnson County office© Provided by Johnson County Sheriff's Office Bradley Cooper

"I apologize to the people I’ve let down” Cooper told the court. “Mainly, I’m deeply sorry to (his victim) for harming her. I take full responsibility for my actions.”

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During Wednesday's hearing, Marshall told Cooper that when people who work in the system violate the law, it damages the reputation of the justice system.

“We should hold ourselves to a higher standard,” Marshall said.

During an April 15 hearing in Greenfield, Cooper admitted that he committed the felony crimes of criminal confinement, identity deception and official misconduct and misdemeanor domestic battery.

Nothing about this case has been typical. Cooper wasn't named publicly when the investigation began in March. He wasn't arrested until six weeks later.

He remained in office despite admitting guilt, because the plea agreement and criminal conviction had not been officially entered in court.

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Deputies were called to a domestic incident in Cooper's home in the 500 block of West State Road 252 in Trafalgar just before midnight March 4.

A woman, identified in court as Cooper's fiance, ran to a neighbor's home and called 911. Her right eye was swollen and bruised. She said Cooper had hit her and would not let her leave.

Cooper, she told police, also used her Facebook account to send messages posing as her.

IndyStar is not naming the woman because she is the victim of a crime.

A deputy at the scene called Johnson County Sheriff Duane Burgess, who ordered them to distance themselves and hand over the investigation to the Indiana State Police.

Doug Brown, the special prosecutor handling the case, has said deputies could have done more.

"He should have been taken into custody by the Johnson County sheriff that night," Brown, the chief deputy prosecutor in Decatur County, told IndyStar in April.

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Burgess said he and his deputies worked too closely with Cooper to maintain transparency and the public's confidence. He stood by his decision.

"It's not the right thing to have the sheriff's department work that," Burgess told IndyStar in April. "When you work with somebody for 20-plus years, there's a friendship that's built.

"Not saying I wouldn't take a friend to jail, but that was the appropriate response."

Cooper's case ended in a plea agreement on the same day the charges were filed. Most criminal cases take months to resolve.

No judge in Johnson County could hear the case without a conflict of interest. The prosecutor's office couldn't handle it either, given that Cooper is their boss.

Brown took over the investigation. The hearing was sent to Hancock County Judge Marshall.

The plea deal was entered on April 15, the day before a secret grand jury was prepared to convene to consider charges against Cooper.

While grand juries are secret, charges and plea hearings are typically public.

The court and special prosecutor did not announce the charges before the hearing. Cooper was not arrested until he turned himself in after the plea agreement had been entered into the court record.

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The  victim has been silent since she released a statement through the Decatur County Prosecutor's Office on the day the charges were filed.

"Today, justice was served," she said. "Bradley made mistakes. He admitted to those mistakes in court and is now willing to accept responsibility. I forgive him. My prayer is that he will come out on the other side a better human being because of all of this."

This story will be updated.

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Call IndyStar reporter Vic Ryckaert at 317-444-2701. Follow him on Twitter: @VicRyc.

This article originally appeared on Indianapolis Star: Brad Cooper sentenced to probation, resigns Johnson County office

Bucks County Man Sentenced To 25 To 50 Years In Girlfriend’s Death After Her Body Found In SUV.
Jason Lutey he pleaded guilty Tuesday to third-degree murder, abuse of a corpse, evidence-tampering and possession of an instrument of crime. The district attorney says Lutey beat Patterson to death in New Britain — then put her body in his car. Authorities said Patterson’s body was found wrapped in a bloodstained cloth in the back of an SUV in September. Bucks County prosecutors planned to seek execution had Lutey been convicted of first-degree murder. Lutey said what he called the “heinous act … will haunt me for the rest of my days.

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