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Missouri Man Charged with Misdemeanor in Maryville Rape Case

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MARYVILLE, Mo. (BILL DRAPER, Associated Press) — A Missouri man accused of sexually assaulting a 14-year-old schoolmate when he was 17 has pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor child endangerment charge as part of a deal with prosecutors.

Matt Barnett entered the plea Thursday during a court hearing in his hometown of Maryville. He was sentenced to two years of probation and a four-month suspended jail term.

Special prosecutor Jean Peters Baker was tasked with re-examining it after it received widespread attention last fall. The local prosecutor dropped the case because he said the girl’s family stopped cooperating.

Baker was appointed in October to re-examine claims by Daisy Coleman, who says she was raped by an older student at a party in January 2012. The Associated Press generally does not name alleged victims of sexual assault but is naming Daisy because she and her mother have granted public interviews.

The girl says Barnett raped her at a house party in January 2012. Barnett says the sex was consensual.

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