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Rape charge amended

Facing up to eight years in prison, a South Point man pleaded guilty to attempted rape Wednesday in Lawrence County Common Pleas Court.

William M. Morrison, 37, of 140 Private Drive 2482 County Road 1, pleaded guilty to the second-degree felony, which was amended from the original charge of first-degree rape of a 13-year-old girl.

Assistant Prosecuting Attorney Brigham Anderson said the negotiation in the case was done in consultation with the victim’s family.

“We’ve worked out a deal,” Anderson said. “He is going to spend a good amount of time in prison. This keeps the young victim from having to testify.”

Anderson also said Morrison will have to register as a sex offender for life.

Judge Charles Cooper set sentencing for Nov. 21, following a pre-sentencing investigation.

According the Lawrence County Sheriff’s Office, the victim in the case called her father and said she had been raped by Morrison at the man’s home.

When the girl’s father went to the Morrison residence, Morrison allegedly fled in a vehicle. Morrison later turned himself in to authorities.