A Watauga man accused of raping three women he met online pleaded guilty Wednesday in exchange for four 15-year prison sentences to be served concurrently.
LDarrius Garner, 21, was arrested last summer and indicted in September on three charges of sexual assault and one charge of robbery.
Police said that Garner had befriended three women on MeetMe.com and Kik, an instant-messaging app, and arranged to pick each up in his car, according to an arrest warrant affidavit.
After driving them to remote areas, “he frequently sexually assaulted them and robbed them using force, threat of force, and occasionally a weapon,” the affidavit said.
Micheal Schneider, Garner’s attorney, questioned the evidence.
“If we could have tried each of the four cases on their own merits we believe the State would have had a difficult time proving the allegations,” Schneider said in a statement. “Unfortunately the law allows for all of the otherwise unrelated allegations to be raised in a single trial thereby creating a ‘dog pile’ effect. This was a risk Mr. Garner wisely chose to avoid.”
Sam Jordan, spokeswoman for the Tarrant County district attorney’s office, said, “We were pleased that as a result of the guilty plea the victims were able to avoid having to go through the trial process.”
“This defendant cruelly took advantage of the trusting nature of these young women, and we hope he will serve every day of his sentence,” she added.
The maximum sentence in each case was 20 years. Garner will be eligible for parole after serving half of his sentence, Jordan said.
Staff writer Deanna Boyd contributed to this report.