Plea set aside in sexual exploitation case

John Richmeier
The Leavenworth Times

The plea of Leavenworth man who pleaded guilty to five counts of sexual exploitation of a child has been set aside.

But it looks like William Cody Henshaw may enter into a new plea agreement to resolve his case.

Henshaw, 26, is charged with crimes that allegedly occurred in 2017. He was charged after his phone was seized during a meeting with a parole officer because of suspicion that it contained pornography, according to County Attorney Todd Thompson.

A forensic examination of the phone revealed Henshaw was in possession of photos of children engaging in sexually explicit conduct.

Henshaw pleaded guilty to the five charges in December. As part of a plea agreement, prosecution and defense attorneys planned to jointly recommend a prison sentence of more than 11 years.

Attorneys later learned a special sentencing rule may apply in the case that could require a life sentence, according to defense attorney Anthony Russo.

Russo said Friday in court that this issue had not been brought up at the time of plea. He said the defense and prosecution have negotiated a new plea agreement in the case to achieve the previously agreed upon resolution.

District Judge Gerald Kuckelman granted a motion to set aside the earlier plea. He scheduled a hearing for March 10 for possibly a new plea.

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