WAPAKONETA — A St. Marys man charged with seven counts of rape and 14 other sex-related charges was prepared to accept a plea deal from prosecutors on Friday. A last-minute technical snafu, however, set the proceedings back at least a week.
Blayne Brock, 35, of St. Marys, appeared in Auglaize County Common Pleas Court on Friday morning for a pretrial hearing that then became a change of plea hearing after prosecutors and the defense attorney huddled behind closed doors.
Brock was indicted by an Auglaize County grand jury in September on 21 felony counts, including seven counts of rape, felonies of the first degree; 12 counts of gross sexual imposition, third-degree felonies; one count of sexual battery, a third-degree felony; and one count of attempted gross sexual imposition, a felony of the fifth degree.
He faced the possibility of life in prison if convicted on the rape counts alone, which carried the language that one of the alleged victims was under the age of 13 at the time the assaults occurred.
Brock has been held on a $2 million bond since his arrest.
There were two female victims in the case, both of whom were under the age of 13 when some of the alleged incidents took place between April of 2017 and June 31 of this year, according to the indictment.
The two victims today are ages 10 and 15.
Assistant Auglaize County Prosecutor Josh Muhlenkamp put a proposed resolution to the case on the record Friday that called for Brock to plead guilty to two amended counts of rape, first-degree felonies with no language to indicate the age of the alleged victim. That reduced the possible maximum penalties from life in prison to a maximum of 16 1/2 years behind bars. The agreement also called for Brock to plead guilty to third-degree felony counts of sexual battery and gross sexual imposition.
Muhlenkamp said the state at sentencing would recommend Brock serve 27 years in prison. Judge Frederick Pepple brought up a sticking point in the agreement as it pertained to early release dates. Muhlenkamp had suggested Brock could request an early release from prison after serving 15 years, but Pepple said the law indicates the first chance of release would be after Brock serves 23 years.
That discrepancy brought the proceedings to a halt as Defense Attorney Rob Wiesenmayer II requested a continuance to further discuss the changes with his client.