Man Faces 120 Years In Beating Of Exchange Student
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[May 22, 2014]
By Mary Wisniewski
CHICAGO (Reuters) - A Chicago man
convicted in the savage beating of an Irish exchange student, which left
her unable to walk or speak, faces up to 120 years in prison when he is
sentenced on Thursday.
Heriberto Viramontes, 35, was found guilty last October of bashing
two young women over the head with a wooden bat and robbing them in
April 2010, including Natasha McShane, then 23, a graduate student
from Northern Ireland.
The attack, which took place in a neighborhood popular with young
adults, brought international attention to the problem of violent
crime in Chicago, the country's third-largest city. It also stirred
Chicago's large Irish-American community, which held fundraisers on
Viramontes was convicted by a jury of two counts of attempted
murder, among other felony counts, and prosecutors are asking for a
sentence of 120 years in prison.
The beating left the second woman, Stacy Jurich, with ongoing health
problems, including seizures, according to local media reports.
McShane and Jurich were headed home from a night of dancing and
celebrating when Viramontes attacked them under a viaduct in
Chicago's Bucktown neighborhood.
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Jurich testified against Viramontes, as did Marcy Cruz, a former
stripper who confessed to driving the getaway van for Viramontes.
Cruz was sentenced to 22 years in prison under a plea agreement,
(Reporting by Mary Wisniewski, editing by G Crosse)
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