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Whitefish man sentenced for raping girl

By The Associated Press
Published On: Jan 05 2013 02:58:32 PM MST
Whitefish man changes not guilty plea
KALISPELL, Mont. -

A Whitefish man connected by DNA evidence to the rape of a 16-year-old girl five years ago has been sentenced to seven years in prison and 13 years of probation.
    
Court records show that 27-year-old Timothy House was sentenced Thursday in Flathead District Court.
    
House in September pleaded no contest to felony rape but Judge Stewart Stadler said state law prevented that plea to that charge.
    
So the no contest plea was withdrawn and replaced with an Alford plea, a type of guilty plea in which a defendant maintains innocence but acknowledges the state has enough evidence for a conviction.
    
House was identified in the 2007 attack after more recently becoming a suspect in a different rape case and a DNA sample was taken.