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Suspects in rape, robbery both plead not guilty to their charges

A Gallipolis man charged with raping an Ohio University student and a local man charged with robbing a gas station at knifepoint both pleaded not guilty at their arraignment hearings yesterday.

Levi D. Canterbury, 21, was charged with allegedly raping an OU student in September. He was indicted Oct. 13 for two counts of rape. He pleaded not guilty to both counts during his arraignment hearing, according to a release from Athens County Prosecutor Keller Blackburn.

The charges stem from a Sept. 10 incident in which Canterbury allegedly picked up the victim on state Route 682, drove her to a lit parking lot and raped her. He dropped her off near College Gate, according to an OU Police Department crime alert.

He then called 911, identified himself and said he picked up a “very, very inebriated” woman who was bleeding from her “backside or lower leg” and dropped her off near College Gate, according to the release.

The alleged rape was reported to OUPD Sept. 15, and Canterbury was arrested Oct. 12 in Ft. Bliss, Texas, where he was deployed with his National Guard Unit.

Rape is a first-degree felony. Canterbury could face a maximum of 20 years in prison and a maximum fine of $40,000 if convicted of both charges, according to the Ohio Revised Code.

He is currently being held on $200,000 bond with 10 percent allowed at the Southeastern Ohio Regional Jail. His trial is set for Dec. 13.

Also yesterday, Brian K. Hoffman, 25, pleaded not guilty to his charges of aggravated robbery and theft of drugs.

Hoffman allegedly entered the Speedway on Richland Avenue, brandished a knife, and demanded all the money in the cash register and cartons of cigarettes, according to court documents.

After his arrest, he was found to be in possession of three vials of medication stolen from O’Bleness Memorial Hospital, according to the release. Hoffman was allegedly seen at the hospital the day before.

He pleaded not guilty to both charges yesterday.

Aggravated robbery is a first-degree felony and theft of drugs is a fourth-degree felony.

Hoffman could be sentenced to a maximum of 10 years and six months in prison and a maximum fine of $25,000 if convicted, according to the Ohio Revised Code.

He is being held on $50,000 bond at the jail. His trial is set to begin Dec. 8.

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