Meadville Tribune

Local News

February 21, 2014

Teen admits to brutal beating in plea deal

MEADVILLE — A Meadville teen has pleaded guilty in Crawford County Court of Common Pleas to one count of felony aggravated assault for the New Year’s Day 2013 beating of a city man outside a drug store.

Timothy Bolden, 17, of Meadville initially was charged by Meadville Police Department with one count each of aggravated assault, criminal conspiracy and reckless endangerment; two counts of simple assault and two summary counts of harassment for his attack on a then-34-year-old man outside the CVS drug store on North Street at 3 a.m. Jan. 1, 2013.

On Thursday, Bolden entered a guilty plea in county court to a charge of aggravated assault for attacking the man. It was part of a plea bargain with the Crawford County District Attorney’s Office.

“Is that what you did?” Judge John Spataro asked Bolden before accepting his plea to aggravated assault.

“Yes sir,” Bolden responded.

In March 2013, Bolden was certified to be tried as an adult following a three-day county court hearing before Spataro. Bolden was 16 at the time of the attack on the man.

At the certification hearing last March, Bolden admitted to kicking the man in the face while the man was down on his hands and knees. At that hearing, the victim testified he had sustained multiple facial fractures that required surgery, had medical bills in excess of $60,000, and continued to suffer some social anxiety from the attack.

In exchange for Bolden pleading guilty Thursday to aggravated assault, a first-degree felony, all the other charges are to be dropped by the District Attorney’s Office.

As part of the plea bargain, Andrew J. Natalo, an assistant district attorney, told Spataro the District Attorney’s Office was recommending Bolden receive a three- to six-year sentence in state prison followed by 24 months of probation.

Bolden could receive a maximum sentence of up to 20 years in state prison and a $25,000 fine for his guilty plea to aggravated assault.

The DA’s Office also recommended Bolden serve his sentence at the State Correctional Institution at Pine Grove, which houses the state’s young adult offender program.

Melvin Raiford, Bolden’s defense attorney, said the state prison at Pine Grove accepts those ages 15 to 22 who have been certified as adults by the courts. Raiford also said Bolden could be eligible for a “boot camp” style prison, which houses young offenders with a structured environment.

Spataro said he intended to go along with the sentencing recommendation for Bolden, who will be sentenced June 13.

Bolden remains under house arrest/electronic monitoring pending his sentencing.

Keith Gushard can be reached at 724-6370 or by email at kgushard@meadvilletribune.com.

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