Rape charges reinstated against Richard DeCoatesworth

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April 1, 2014 3:39:21 PM PDT
All charges have been reinstated against Richard DeCoatsworth after he chose to withdraw his guilty plea, paving the way for him to go to trial on charges he drugged and assaulted two alleged prostitutes.

DeCoatsworth said in court Tuesday that he submitted the guilty plea because he wanted to make bail. However, Judge Charles Ehlrich denied the motion for a bail reduction, saying he felt DeCoatsworth is a danger to society.

DeCoatsworth's attorney, Charles Peruto Jr., previously told Action News that his client now wants to go to trial on the original 32 charges against him. Peruto also told Action News that DeCoatsworth's decision goes against his advice.

Decoatsworth says he wants an opportunity for a fair trial to defend himself, and continues to maintain his innocence.

Back in late February, the former Philadelphia police officer pleaded guilty to just a handful of charges and some 30 charges were dropped.

DeCoatsworth was arrested back in May 2013 and charged with Rape, Indecent Deviant Sexual Intercourse, Sexual Assault and other offenses after authorities said he drugged and raped two women and forced them into prostitution.

He was also charged with an assault on his girlfriend.

DeCoatsworth was hailed as a hero police officer after he was shot in the face during a traffic stop in September 2007 but still managed to chase after his attacker, who was later sentenced to 36 to 72 years in prison.

It was an act of valor that got him an invitation from Vice President Joe Biden to attend the president's televised February 2009 address to Congress and a seat next to First Lady Michelle Obama.

DeCoatsworth later retired from the police department on disability in December 2011.


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