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Itoh pleads guilty to lesser charge

BY DI STAFF | MARCH 24, 2011 7:20 AM

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The former University of Iowa professor accused of sexually abusing a former research assistant pleaded guilty to a lesser crime Wednesday.

Toshiki Itoh, 47, pleaded guilty to intent to commit sexual abuse, an aggravated misdemeanor, through an Alford Plea, said Johnson County prosecutor Janet Lyness. He had been charged with third-degree sexual abuse, a Class C felony.

Prosecutors offered the deal late last week, and it was completed Wednesday, Lyness said.

Itoh resigned from the UI last month after more than two years on paid administrative leave. He was accused of attacking a female research assistant.

A Johnson County jury found Itoh guilty of two counts of assault with intent to cause bodily injury, but it was split on the sexual abuse charge. A new trial would have been scheduled had he not pleaded guilty. He has yet to be sentenced on those charges.

Lyness said the state is seeking a two-year suspended sentence. Itoh must also register as a sex offender and go through treatment.

Officials advised Itoh, who is not a U.S. citizen, that these are deportable offenses, Lyness said.

— by Regina Zilbermints


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