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Dietrich High School football player pleads guilty to assaulting black mentally disabled teammate

Posted: 8:29 PM, Dec 16, 2016
Updated: 2016-12-16 23:57:16-05

The Twin Falls Times reports that a high school football player in the small town of Dietrich has pleaded guilty to attacking a mentally disabled African-American teammate in October of last year. 

The paper reports 19-year-old John R.K Howard pleaded guilty to one felony count of injury to a child. They report Howard submitted an Alford plea, which means he maintains his innocence, but acknowledges a jury could likely find him guilty if he went to trial.

Originally he was charged with sexually assaulting the victim, but now prosecutors say it wasn't a sex crime. Howard will be sentenced in February; he could face up to three years probation and will likely be ordered to perform up to 300 hours of community service.

 Another teammate, a juvenile, has also pleaded guilty in the case. The family of the victim has filed a lawsuit against the Dietrich School District.