(Le Center, MN) – A Morristown man who was accused of raping and assaulting a woman is headed to prison.
Eli Benjamin Lange, 38, was sentenced Monday in Le Sueur County Court. Lange signed a Petition to Enter a Plea of Guilty in September in which he agreed to plead guilty to a count of felony second-degree assault. Four additional charges were dismissed, including two counts of felony first-degree criminal sexual conduct, felony domestic assault, and felony threats of violence.
First Judicial District Court Judge Mark Vandelist sentenced Lange to 9 years in the Minnesota Department of Corrections St. Cloud, with credit for three days served. Lange was also sentenced to pay nearly $34,000 in restitution and fees. The fines were imposed by Judge Vandelist even after Lange filed an affidavit with the courts in September, saying that the damages done to the premises in the home where the crime was committed were not his fault.
“The damage resulted from law enforcement’s decision to take extraordinary measures that were uncalled for. Gassing the apartment was completely unnecessary,” reads the affidavit.
In February 2019, police were dispatched to a Waterville residence where a woman said Lange had raped her, poured Bacardi on her, and cut her with a knife while her children were in the home. The victim told police that Lange told her daughter he would cut her mother’s head off and kill her in front of the children
Police found two knives, a Bacardi bottle, and torn clothing with marked with blood in the home.
The woman’s 10-year-old child called police. Lange had left the residence, but eventually turned himself in to police.
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