The most serious charge against a Gainesville man was dismissed last month in a plea concerning exploitation of a disabled adult, according to court documents.
Christopher John Young, 37, was originally arrested in July 2017 and later charged in a March 2020 indictment with aggravated sodomy, exploitation and intimidation of a disabled adult and misdemeanor sexual battery.
An investigator said at a committal hearing that the woman victim, who was in her 30s, had a diminished mental capacity.
Young’s plea April 21 led to the first and last charges being dismissed. Superior Court Judge Bonnie Oliver handed down a sentence of 10 years with the first three years in the Hall County work release program.
The rest of the sentence may be served on probation.
Young’s plea was considered an Alford plea, in which the defendant does not admit guilt but concedes that the evidence would likely lead to a conviction.
“We were pleased to get the aggravated sodomy charge dismissed and to resolve the case in the manner that we did,” defense attorney Blake Poole said in a statement. “Chris can now continue his life without spending the next 10 years in prison or being burdened by the registry.”
Poole said Young would get credit for time served and would likely only serve a few months in work release.
“As with all plea negotiations, we take into account all of the totality of the circumstances, the wishes of the named victims and all potential proof issues,” Northeastern Judicial Circuit District Attorney Lee Darragh said in a statement. “For the protection and privacy of the victim in the case about which you ask, I decline further details.”