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Charges dismissed against two men accused of assaulting woman

MONTEVIDEO -- The criminal sexual conduct charges against two young men for sexually assaulting a woman in December 2009 at a Granite Falls hotel have been dismissed.

According to Chippewa County Attorney David Gilbertson, the victim in the case asked him to dismiss the charges against William Robert Sturgeon, 19, of Marshall and John Paul Reyes, 20, of Hanley Falls.

Gilbertson honored that request by filing the dismissal on Monday in Chippewa County District Court. However, Gilbertson said the woman has not retracted her statement about what happened to her during the alleged assault.

Both Sturgeon and Reyes had faced two first- and two third-degree criminal sexual conduct charges, which were filed after Granite Falls police officers were called around 3:45 a.m. Dec. 23, 2009, regarding a sexual assault at the Scenic Valley Motel. An officer met a woman later the same day and learned that the woman and friends had been drinking and celebrating a birthday at the motel on the night of Dec. 22.

She said the group had moved to Reyes' apartment and continued drinking. The woman's friends left and then the men allegedly assaulted her. The woman said she left the apartment and called another person for help. A sexual assault evidence kit was gathered from the woman and the state Bureau of Criminal Apprehension matched DNA from the kit to a DNA sample from Sturgeon.

Both men told investigators their sexual contact with the woman was consensual.

Gretchen Schlosser

Gretchen Schlosser is the public safety reporter, and writes about agriculture occasionally, for the West Central Tribune. She's been with the Tribune since 2006 and has 17 years of experience working in news, media and communications. 

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