Reversal of her conviction is being offered to a young Twin Cities woman who pleaded guilty to chopping several inches off the hair of a teenager as the victim was being beaten in a late-night ambush.
Alexis S. Nelson, 20, of Zimmerman, was sentenced this week in the June 17 attack of a 15-year-old St. Francis girl whose beating was captured on video and viewed on Facebook more than 500,000 times.
In his sentencing, Anoka County District Judge Jonathan Jasper granted Nelson, who was convicted of misdemeanor fifth-degree assault, what is called a "stay of adjudication." That means Nelson's case will be dismissed if she meets all requirements demanded of her during her one year supervised probation.
Those requirements include: write a letter of apology to her victim, Sydney DeTenancour, who was 15 at the time of the beating; continue psychiatric counseling; take prescribed medications; complete a domestic violence treatment program; pay $80 restitution to her victim and $188 in fines and fees; and engage in "no assaultive/abusive or disorderly behavior," the sentencing document read.
The maximum sentence called for 90 days in jail and a $1,000 fine.
Nelson was not accused of hitting DeTenancour but did cut off the victim's hair when DeTenancour was on the ground being kicked and punched in dark woods near the Ponds Golf Course in St. Francis, the video showed and the criminal complaint spelled out.
DeTenancour came away with bruises, red marks and scratches "all over her body and face, and a large section of her hair had been cut off," the charging documents said.
In November, 19-year-old Cassandra T. Borden, of Cedar, was sentenced on a fifth-degree assault conviction to anger management instruction and a small fine for being one of two teens who carried out the beating. Jasper also gave Borden a 90-day jail term, but 89 of those were stayed for one year, and she had already served one day upon her arrest.
The judge did order Borden to undergo anger management counseling, write a letter of apology, obtain a high school equivalency degree and perform 40 hours of community service.
DeTenancour was hit nearly 50 times by Borden, who can be heard on the video during the profanity-laced tirade accusing the victim of being with "my man."
The attackers accused DeTenancour of "snitching" on Borden's boyfriend, who was cited for drunken driving.
The video also shows a third female straddling and punching a prone DeTenancour. She identifies herself as the sister of the man caught drinking and driving. That attacker is a juvenile, so any charges against her have not been made public.
The teen's beating inspired an antibullying campaign led by her family and friends. T-shirts and bracelets have been made in DeTenancour's honor, and a "Syd's Angels" motorcycle ride was held in September to raise awareness about bullying.