November 14, 2006
William Beebe pleaded guilty in Charlottesville Circuit Court on Tuesday to one count of aggravated sexual battery for assaulting Liz Seccuro. The incident happened during a party at a University of Virginia fraternity house in 1984.
Reading from a statement outside the courthouse Beebe said, "Pleading guilty today to a lesser charge I acknowledge formally what I tried to acknowledge in my letter to her. Twenty two years ago , I harmed another person and I've tried to set that right."
Securro has been waiting for this day for decades and said, "I think it's an edifying moment to hear that word and its also a moment for my parents who were not given the proper information twenty three years ago so this day is a really long time coming."
Under the plea agreement, the state recommended that Beebe serve
two years in prison. He'll remain free on bond until he's sentenced
Beebe will also cooperate with authorities as they continue their investigation. Prosecutors say investigators believe more than one person may have sexually assaulted Seccuro. Seccuro told us the investigation has spanned two continents.
Securro said she isn't ready to comment about this new information but did say, "In light of this new evidence I understand that it doesn't end in the immediate future and it is far more grave than we thought however I have a great deal of confidence in the Commonwealth to bring these assailants to justice."
The case gained national attention after Seccuro said Beebe apologized to her by e-mail last year to make amends as part of a 12-step program. She then called Charlottesville Police. A trial was set for November 27, 2006.
Seccuro went public with her name, saying she wanted to
help other rape survivors. Leaving the court house Tuesday she said she will continue her work with rape survivors.
Prosecutors have agreed to let Beebe leave Virginia while he is awaiting sentencing. He plans to visit his sick mother in Florida.