A rape case scheduled for trial next week in Richmond County Superior Court has ended with a guilty plea.
Albert Lee Ellison, 25, pleaded guilty Friday to reduced charges of attempted rape and kidnapping, a change the prosecutor agreed to on behalf of the victim, who was terrified of facing Ellison again.
On the evening of Nov. 11, 2008, the woman was cleaning an office building on Walton Way when Ellison hit her in the head from behind and dragged her to a nearby empty house, Assistant District Attorney John Markwalter told the judge Friday.
Ellison raped the woman before forcing her into her car and driving on Walton Way until a tire blew and she escaped, Markwalter said.
The evidence was strong against Ellison, the prosecutor said, including an attack five months earlier on a pedestrian who Ellison knocked to the ground and stimulated a sex act on.
The rape victim was too traumatized to relive the crime by testifying in front of a roomful of people, including Ellison.
Ellison, who cannot read or write, has a long history of mental health issues, Assistant Public Defender Todd Mitchell told the judge. He is taking responsibility for what happened, however.
Judge Michael N. Annis sentenced Ellison to 35 years in prison followed by 10 years on probation. He will get credit for the four years he has been jailed pending trial, but he will have to serve the rest of the prison sentence.