COLUMBIA—William Lee Palmer and Skylar McClanahan were released from Boone County Jail on Monday after accepting plea bargains that reduce their original rape and sodomy charges to first-degree sexual misconduct.
The men were both arrested this spring on suspicion of forcible rape and forcible sodomy of a 13-year-old girl. They were charged with first-degree statutory rape and first-degree statutory sodomy.
Until Monday, both were held on $500,000 bonds. The two are now on supervised probation for two years and will be forced to pay court costs, according to Case.net, an online listing of Missouri court records.
“Both men pled guilty to having sexual contact with the victim without consent,” said prosecutor Tracy Gonzalez on Tuesday afternoon.
She was unable to comment on the specific details of the plea negotiation but said the victim and both defendants were consulted about the terms of the agreement before Monday's hearing.
The victim reported that the men attacked her on March 28 when she was asleep at the home of a family friend. She was able to describe the men to police and identify them in photographs.
McClanahan was arrested on April 7, and Palmer was taken into custody on May 16. Had the pair been tried and found guilty by a jury, Gonzalez said the men could have faced five years to life in prison.
Although the victim and her family chose not to be present at the hearing Monday, Gonzalez said they were aware of the disposition.
McClanahan and Palmer were ordered to have no unlawful contact with the victim or her family and must register as sex offenders.