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DECATUR — Antwain J. Ward is facing the prospect of spending up to the next 10 years of his life in prison for the repeated rape and sexual assault of a Decatur girl younger than 13.

Ward, 35, appeared in Macon County Circuit Court on Monday and pleaded guilty to predatory criminal sexual assault, a Class X felony.

The plea was part of a plea deal negotiated by Ward’s public defender, Tiffany Senger, that saw an additional predatory criminal sexual assault charge dropped. Assistant State’s Attorney Kate Kurtz also agreed to a sentence cap of 10 years, and Judge Thomas Griffith scheduled a sentence hearing for May 14.

A sworn affidavit filed with the case from Decatur police officer Martin St. Pierre had described a pattern of repeated rapes and assaults dating back to when the child was in first grade and continuing for several years. The offenses came to light in 2017 when the girl’s mother learned of them and took the child to Decatur Memorial Hospital for a physical examination.

A police investigation later backed up the child’s story of assaults with a forensic examination of her underwear.

In addition to whatever prison sentence he receives, Ward was told by Griffith that he will have to register “for the balance of your natural life” as a sex offender.


2019 mug shots from the Herald & Review

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Contact Tony Reid at (217) 421-7977. Follow him on Twitter: @TonyJReid

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Macon County Courts Reporter

Macon County courts reporter for the Herald & Review.

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