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Fmr. Indiana student gets probation after rape charges dropped

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - A former Indiana University student who had been accused of raping two fellow students has been sentenced to a year of probation after a plea deal.

John Enochs of Downers Grove, Illinois, had initially been charged with two counts of felony rape in connection with assaults that prosecutor say happened on the school's Bloomington campus in April 2015 and in 2013. Enochs had denied those charges.

In the deal with prosecutors, the former business student agreed to plead guilty to the lessor charge of battery with moderate bodily injury, a misdemeanor. The two rape charges were dismissed.

According to WXIN-TV, court records show he spent one day in jail. DNA tests linked Enochs to the April 2015 victim, according to a probable cause affidavit obtained by CBS News, which cites a rape kit that found lacerations to the victim's genitals.

In the 2015 incident, a woman told police she'd been raped at a Delta Tau Delta fraternity house. She told police she didn't know her alleged attacker, reports CBS affiliate WTTV. She said she repeatedly told him to stop, but he held her down. Eventually, she said she was able to leave the room and get away, the station reports.

Police said security video showed Enochs entering the room with the woman. A witness told police that after the incident, the woman repeatedly said, "I kept saying no," and "He kept touching me everywhere."

While that case was under investigation, reports the station, Enochs surfaced as a suspect in the 2013 rape, the station reports.

In a statement released Monday, the Monroe County Prosecutor's Office said the case presented a "very unusual" set of circumstances because the two accusations were in unrelated cases and two years apart. Indiana law would have prevented a jury in either case from learning about the other allegation if the cases went to trial, the statement read.

After the case was filed, the office said in a statement, "evidence continued to be developed that led us to the conclusion that neither case, standing alone, presented sufficient evidence to prove rape."

The office cited "evidentiary" problems with both cases. In the 2013 case, they said, the complaining witness had "no specific recollection of the events" and decided to prosecute two years after the incident, which "severely hindered" the investigation. In addition, the office said, other witnesses couldn't recall some important details, and photographs existed that contradicted "the assertion that the complaining witness was incapable of engaging in consensual activity shortly before the alleged assault."

The probable cause affidavit cites interviews with multiple witnesses who said they saw Enoch having sex with the woman. One witness said the victim appeared to be "passed out."

That was significant, according to prosecutors, because the woman claimed she was unaware the sex was happening because she was drunk.

In the more recent case, prosecutors said DNA evidence was problematic and also said video before and after the alleged assault "did not support the assertion of a forcible rape."

Prosecutors say Enochs agreed to plead guilty to a felony battery count, and the court decided to enter the plea on a misdemeanor count.

Enochs' lawyer Katharine Liell tells the station Enochs was charged with crimes he didn't commit and blamed lead investigators for what she called "false and misleading evidence" in the probable cause affidavit charging him with rape.

Enochs and prosecutors agreed to a deal in which he would plead guilty to a felony battery, but the charge was then dropped to a misdemeanor by the court.

Katharine Liell, who represented Enochs in the case, said Enochs was charged with crimes he didn't commit. Liell pointed out that prosecutors dismissed both rape charges and blamed the lead investigators for presenting "false and misleading evidence" in the probable cause affidavit charging Enochs with rape.

"As the Monroe County prosecutors' office has acknowledged through their voluntary dismissal of the rape charges, John Enochs did not rape anyone and he should never have been charged with these offenses," Liell said in a statement. "He is profoundly sorry for his lack of judgment and has apologized for his conduct."

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