Man changes plea to guilty, sentenced to 18 years

2 years 6 months 4 days ago August 19, 2014 Aug 19, 2014 Tuesday, August 19 2014 Tuesday, August 19, 2014 5:46:00 PM CDT in News
By: Jenna Middaugh, KOMU 8 Digital Producer

JEFFERSON CITY - A man set to be tried Tuesday will serve 18 years in prison after pleading guilty to several sex charges.

Brett Courtney, of Jefferson City, was supposed to stand trial Tuesday, but moments before the jury was brought in, his counsel announced he wanted to change his not guilty plea to guilty.

Courtney was charged with attempted rape, two counts of forcible sodomy and armed criminal action after a July 9, 2012 sexual assault.

Authorities said Courtney broke into a home on St. Louis Drive in Jefferson City and sexually assaulted a 16-year-old girl who was home alone. Courtney was said to be wearing a ski mask and latex gloves during the assault.

Officials said Courtney was tied to the case after a SWAT team entered his home because he was suicidal and had barricaded himself inside.

According to officials, Courtney's home was a short distance from the scene of the sexual assault, and several items related to the assault were seen out in the open. Authorities obtained a search warrant, arrested Courtney and linked him to the crime with DNA samples.

Officials said if Courtney is released, he will have lifetime supervision with GPS monitoring. Courtney will have to serve at least 85 percent of his sentence before being eligible for parole.

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