QUEENSBURY — The Vermont man who was accused of sexually assaulting a woman in a Lake Luzerne campground last summer has asked a judge to dismiss one of the sex assault charges against him as trial nears in the case.
Andrew S. Moran, of Chelsea, Vermont, rejected a plea deal offer Friday that would send him to prison for 5 years, with parole of 20 years required after his release.
In January, he rejected a different offer that included a prison sentence of at least 8 years, to be followed by up to 10 years on parole.
Warren County District Attorney Jason Carusone said an amended plea deal was offered in part to spare the victim from having to testify at trial. Carusone’s office withdrew the offer after Moran rejected it.
Moran, 54, faces a four-count indictment that accused him of first-degree criminal sexual act, third-degree criminal sexual act and two counts of burglary for an incident last Sept. 3 at Mount Kenyon Campground. He has pleaded not guilty.
He is accused of having sexual contact with a woman in her tent when she was “physically helpless” and unable to consent. They were acquainted, having met earlier in the weekend.
The Warren County Sheriff’s Office said she awoke to find she was being assaulted, and the suspect fled her tent but was found walking nearby later in the day.
Trial in the case has been scheduled to start April 1, with a pretrial hearing set before Warren County Judge John Hall on March 22. That hearing will focus on the admissibility of evidence in the case, including a videotape of police questioning him after the sexual assault was reported.
Moran’s lawyer, Warren County Assistant Public Defender Lynn Pucciarelli, filed a motion this week seeking dismissal of the third-degree criminal sexual act count. She wrote that it was “multiplicitous” in light of the first-degree criminal sexual act count, as both accuse the defendant of having sex with a person without their consent.
Hall has not ruled on the motion, but did rule in favor of the Warren County District Attorney’s Office when an earlier motion to dismiss was filed.
Moran is free on bail and faces up to 40 years in state prison if convicted of the weightiest charges.