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Courts

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Ex-pro skater handed 10 years

A former professional in-line skater was sentenced to 10 years in prison after his conviction this month of sexual contact with a teenager.

William E. Bowen, 28, of Greensboro, North Carolina, was charged last June with two counts of sexual misconduct with a minor – one a Class B felony punishable by six to 20 years in prison, the other a Class C felony punishable by up to eight years.

On May 1, an Allen Superior Court jury convicted Bowen of both charges. On Friday, Allen Superior Court Judge Fran Gull sentenced him to a total of 10 years on one charge and four years on the other, then ordered the sentences to be served at the same time.

The charges stemmed from a competition trip to Fort Wayne in summer 2011. According to court documents, a 14-year-old girl who was also in the city for the competition, who identified herself as Bowen’s “No. 1 fan,” went to a hotel to hang out with fellow skaters.

She told investigators that when she walked past his hotel room, she saw him alone in the room. When she went into the room, Bowen closed the door and told her he wanted to have sex with her, which he eventually did, according to court documents.

The girl told an interviewer at a Child Advocacy Center in Tacoma, Washington, that she found out he sent another underage girl text messages, saying he wanted to teach her about sex, according to court documents.

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