Westbrook woman accused of helping boyfriend sexually assault her relative rejects plea deal

Posted June 24, 2014, at 2:28 p.m.

PORTLAND, Maine — A court hearing for Holly Morrison, a Westbrook woman accused of helping her boyfriend sexually assault a young relative, ended quickly on Tuesday when attorneys told the judge she will not change her plea.

Morrison’s case will proceed to trial, and jury selection is scheduled for July 14.

Morrison, her attorney, Amanda Doherty, and Assistant Cumberland County District Attorney Michael Madigan gathered in Cumberland County Unified Criminal Court on Tuesday afternoon for a Rule 11 hearing, which are typically scheduled for plea changes.

However, Doherty announced that Morrison would not be entering a guilty plea and will instead be seeking a trial.

Madigan told the court that prosecutors would have recommended a sentence of 15 years, with all but 10 years plus probation suspended, under a plea agreement with Morrison, but she said the defendant “rejected” the deal.

Morrison was indicted by the Cumberland County grand jury on three Class A counts of gross sexual assault, as well as three counts of endangering the welfare of a child in April.

The boyfriend, 59-year-old Donald Cass of Auburn, pleaded guilty in February to two counts of gross sexual assault and was sentenced to eight years in prison, with all but four years suspended, and four years of probation.

According to affidavits by Westbrook police officers, the victim reported to friends and a Department of Health and Human Services worker on Nov. 14 that Morrison’s boyfriend had been sexually assaulting her since the beginning of October.

The victim is related to Morrison, according to court documents.

The victim told police that Cass used objects to sexually assault her and that Morrison assisted Cass by insisting the victim get into bed with the two of them and shower with them.

Police allege that Morrison admitted to seeing Cass assault the victim on three occasions.

Morrison allegedly told detectives that she met Cass at a “swingers’ party.” Cass visited her on weekends for five years, unbeknownst to his wife.

To reach a sexual assault advocate, call the Statewide Sexual Assault Crisis and Support Line at 800-871-7741, TTY 888-458-5599. This free and confidential 24-hour service is accessible from anywhere in Maine. Calls are automatically routed to the closest sexual violence service provider.

BDN staff reporter Beth Brogan contributed to this story.

 

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