ELYRIA — A Seville man was sentenced to eight years in prison after pleading guilty to charges of kidnapping and raping a North Ridgeville woman.
Anthony Konopinski, 26, pleaded guilty to an amended indictment Monday afternoon before Lorain County Common Pleas Judge James Miraldi. Konopinski pleaded guilty to first-degree felony counts of kidnapping and rape and a second-degree count of felonious assault in connection with the Jan. 31, 2017, incident.
Prosecutors have said the the 21-year-old victim and Konopinski had been dating when the defendant sexually assaulted the woman, choked her and drove her around. Konopinski drove the victim from North Ridgeville to Old Brooklyn, where she was able to get away.
The woman fled to a gas station where she sought help from two Cleveland police officers, who then arrested Konopinski.
“It was one incident, but it took place over an entire night,” Assistant County Prosecutor Donna Freeman said. “The allegations are that he choked her into unconsciousness at various points of the night. He held her against her will for several hours, prior to actually raping her. The next morning, he actually put her in the car and drove her around with her for hours. They went to a place in Strongsville and they went to a 7-Eleven in Cleveland, and he was still telling her (she) couldn’t get out of the car.”
The defendant originally was indicted on counts of rape, felonious assault and five counts of kidnapping with a sexual motivation specification. A trial on the matter had been scheduled to begin Monday, but the plea agreement was reached instead.
As part of the agreement, Konopinski was sentenced eight years in prison and will have to register as a sex offender for the rest of his life upon release from prison. Miraldi said Konopinski will be credited with time served, as the defendant has been in Lorain County Jail for about 20 months since he was arrested.