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Published: Tuesday, 1/29/2008

UT dorm intruder guilty of burglary

BY ERICA BLAKE
BLADE STAFF WRITER

A former University of Toledo student who was sentenced to prison in October for entering the dorm rooms of female students while they slept returned yesterday to Lucas County Common Pleas Court, where he was convicted on two additional charges.

Jeremy Ketter, 25, of 4051 Walker Ave., entered an Alford plea to two counts of burglary. He faces up to 16 years in prison when sentenced Feb. 25 by Judge Denise Ann Dartt.

Ketter was charged with inappropriately touching female students after he entered the rooms in UT's Nash Hall on Sept. 6. The incident occurred the day before he was scheduled to appear in court for sentencing in a similar case.

"The girls all thought this was a mistake," Assistant County Prosecutor Tim Braun said. "It was only when talking to each other did they discover what happened."

In March, Ketter was arrested for entering rooms in The Crossings dormitory and touching the arm of one female student and lying down next to another. A UT student at the time of the incident, Ketter pleaded no contest to burglary in July and was found guilty.

In October, Judge Dartt sentenced him to three years in prison but stayed the sentence pending the outcome of the additional burglary charges.

Yesterday, he entered an Alford plea on the new charges. Judge Dartt said that she would consider a total sentence within the range of six to seven years.

In an Alford plea, the defendant maintains his innocence or does not admit he committed a crime, but still pleads guilty because he decides it's in his best interest. The court treats it the same as any guilty plea.

"This is repeat behavior," Mr. Braun said after the hearing. "This is someone who has a little obsession and other people paid for it."

Ketter's attorney, Tyrone Riley, had filed a notice of an alibi Friday and asked the judge to allow it into the trial that was slated to start yesterday. Because court rules require a notice of alibi to be filed at least seven days before the trial, Judge Dartt denied the request.

Mr. Riley had also previously spoken of a videotape that he had hoped would exonerate his client. Mr. Braun said after the hearing that the tape showed Ketter in a convenience store but not at the times the burglaries occurred.

Mr. Riley declined to comment after the hearing.

Judge Dartt referred Ketter to the Court Diagnostic and Treatment Center for a presentence investigation report.

Contact Erica Blake at:

eblake@theblade.com

or 419-213-2134.



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