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Philly Gay Bashing Defendants Expected to Plead Guilty

Thursday Sep 17, 2015

The gay couple who were brutally assaulted by a "clean cut" gang in Philadelphia last September are one step closer to having justice served, as lawyers for the three defendants accused of taking part in the beating said their clients are considering deals with the DA's office.

According to Philly.com, Assistant District Attorney Michael Barry expects Philip Williams, 25, Kevin Harrigan, 27 and Kathryn Knott, 25, to enter guilty pleas, when their case is next listed in the Criminal Justice Center on October 15.

"Either the defendants will plead guilty," Barry said, or their case will be "spun out for trial."

None of the three defendants were present in court today or at other pre-trial conferences in this case because according to Barry, "as part of their bail, they are banned from Center City."

The trio are being charged with conspiracy and two counts of aggravated assault, simple assault and recklessly endangering another person, for the September 11, 2014 attack on gay couple Zachary Hesse and Andrew Haught.

Barry did not comment on the details of the pleas being offered from the DA's office, but Joshua Scarpello, attorney for Harrigan said that all three defendants have not been offered the same deal.

According to the prosecutors, the defendants used gay slurs towards Hesse and Haught and physically beat them. Haught was injured with multiple broken bones, having his jaw wired shut for two months. According to a spokesperson for the Philadelphia District Attorney's office, if they are convicted on all charges, the maximum sentence could be as high as 34 to 68 years in prison.

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