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Utah man sent to prison in case of supposedly life-saving sex

Published March 25, 2014 8:42 pm

Courts • Rodger Kelly pleaded guilty to second-degree felony forcible sexual abuse.
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2014, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

A 50-year-old St. George man who claimed he had sex with his unconscious neighbor to try to warm her was sentenced to prison on Tuesday.

Rodger William Kelly was originally charged in 5th District Court with one count of first-degree felony rape after he allegedly had intercourse with the unconscious 29-year-old woman last year because "he was trying to save her life," according to court documents.

In January, Kelly pleaded guilty to a lesser second-degree felony count of forcible sexual abuse. The plea came in the form of an Alford plea, meaning Kelly did not admit guilt, but acknowledged the evidence prosecutors would present at trial would likely persuade a jury to convict him.

On Tuesday, a judge sentenced Kelly to spend one to 15 years in prison.

According to plea agreement documents, Kelly found the victim on a neighbor's front porch on May 19. The woman was cold, unresponsive and struggling to breathe, possibly from a drug reaction or overdose, according to court documents. Kelly then took the woman to his apartment.

"In what he says was an attempt to help [the victim], he began to rub her arms, legs and stomach," according to plea agreement documents. "He also removed some of her clothing, stating he believed it was restricting her breathing. In the course of these actions, the defendant became aroused and inserted his penis inside of the victim's vagina."

The woman was unconscious throughout the incident, and never gave consent for sex, according to court documents. After the woman vomited, Kelly stopped the sexual contact and called 911.

When police arrived, responding to an unconscious person call, they said they found Kelly inside his apartment giving the woman CPR.

Kelly told police that the two were previously intimate, but admitted the woman had told him before the incident that she didn't want to have sex with him again.

jmiller@sltrib.com

Twitter: @jm_miller