WHITLEY COUNTY – A preliminary hearing for four Whitley County men accused of raping an intoxicated woman at a Williamsburg motel was continued Monday as the court waits for additional attorneys to be obtained, however, three of the four men were still allowed reduced bonds during the proceedings.
Ronald Leas, 18, of Corbin; Benjamin Brock, 18, of Williamsburg; Michael Davis, 18, of Emlyn; and Ryan Davis, 18, of Emlyn; appeared together in Whitley District Court for the hearing, where the investigating officer was expected to provide testimony to the court concerning the alleged incident, though no testimony was given. According to Commonwealth’s Attorney Ronnie Bowling, two of the four men are still waiting to have public defenders appointed to them, saying that such an issue was “not uncommon with four defendants.”
Adam Delph, who represents Leas, informed the court that he was still waiting for conflict counsel to be assigned to the Davis brothers, asking that the hearing be continued until next week. Judge Fred White sustained the request, resetting the hearing for June 10.
Brock’s attorney, Paul Croley, also asked that the court consider a modification of Brock’s bond from $10,000 cash to a fully secured bond. Bowling said that he would not object to a property bond of some sort for Brock and the Davis brothers, but said he believed Leas to be a flight risk and would be opposed to allowing his bond to be changed.
Judge White ruled to amend the bonds for Brock and the Davis brothers to $10,000 fully secured.
During next week’s hearing, if Judge White determines that the case shows probable cause that a crime has been committed, then the case will move on to be presented to a Whitley County grand jury, where prosecutors will attempt to indict the men on their charges.
Police began an investigation into the alleged incident late last month after a female victim contacted police to report that she had been sexually assaulted by the four men at an area motel on May 18. The victim allegedly told police that she was heavily intoxicated to the point of incapacitation at the time the alleged incident occurred.
Leas turned himself in May 23 after learning that police were searching for him. After providing statements to police, he was arrested and charged with first-degree rape and video voyeurism. Brock and the Davis brothers were taken into custody May 25 after police obtained arrest warrants for them. They were also charged with first-degree rape and video voyeurism.
All four men currently remain jailed in the Whitley County Detention Center.