Man who pleaded guilty in attack released by mistake

A man who forcibly touched a woman was released instead of being incarcerated, leaving his victim fearing for her safety.



According to a criminal complaint, the victim was in an elevator in January when Edward Dawkins entered the elevator and started touching her once the doors closed, telling her that he wouldn't hurt her if she didn't scream. The attack occurred for about five minutes.



Dawkins appeared in court and pleaded guilty to the incident on Tuesday. He was sentenced to nine months behind bars, but was released because of "some kind of error," according to one official.



The victim describes Dawkins' release as having "the same feeling all over again," referring to the attack. "I was supposed to be happy because he was sentenced, and now I'm sad because he is out on the street."



The district attorney's office says that once a person is sentenced, the Office of Court Administration handles custody. That office told News 12 it is looking into Dawkins' release.



A bench warrant has been issued for Dawkins' arrest.


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