A La Plata County man who sexually assaulted a woman at gunpoint was sentenced Friday to six years in prison.
Anthony “Izzy” Fitts, 19, was facing six to 16 years in prison after pleading guilty to second-degree assault and two counts of attempted sexual assault in a plea agreement with the 6th Judicial District Attorney’s Office.
“While Mr. Fitts was a participant and committed the crimes he’s charged with, in my interpretation, he was more of a follower,” said District Court Judge William Herringer.
During Friday’s court hearing, Fitts expressed remorse for his actions. He apologized to the victim, who didn’t speak, and said he has had an opportunity to grow closer with his family and become more mature in the past year since the assault.
“I wish I had the nerve to do something to protect you,” Fitts said, addressing the victim.
Fitts’ mother, Wendy Wagoner, sat behind him on a court bench with about a dozen other family members and friends who cried.
“He’s a changed man,” Wagoner told Herringer. “He has goals.”
Fitts is one of three men who sexually assaulted a Fort Lewis College student at gunpoint late Oct. 14, 2017, while driving to various locations around Durango, including a parking lot near the Durango Skate Park, according police and prosecutors.
Co-defendant James Zink was sentenced Aug. 31 to 14 years in prison and 10 years probation for second-degree assault; and co-defendant Devin “Ducky” Bond has pleaded not guilty to six charges, including felony sexual assault. He is scheduled for a seven-day jury trial to begin Feb. 11.
According to arrest affidavits, Zink, Fitts and Bond offered a woman a ride home from a party in northeast Durango. The woman was expecting to be taken to Fort Lewis College. Instead, she was driven around town for an unknown period of time. Once parked, Zink threatened the woman with a shotgun and forced her to perform sexual acts on the men.
Police, who had received a call from a man who had also been in the car earlier and was reporting he had money stolen from him, encountered the car with the men and woman at the Durango Skate Park in the 1300 block of Roosa Avenue and interrupted the suspected sexual assault.