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UPDATE | Former MU student, Chase Hardin, sentenced to at least 20 years in prison in sexual assault case

Published: Sep. 25, 2020 at 10:23 AM EDT
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UPDATE 9/25/20 @ 12:30 p.m.

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) - Chase Hardin, 23, was sentenced to 20-50 years in prison Friday after he was found guilty in August of two-counts of second-degree sexual assault.

The former Marshall University student was on trial in August, accused of sexually assaulting two different women. However, the jury only returned a guilty verdict in one of the women’s cases.

At the beginning of Friday’s sentencing hearing, Hardin’s defense attorney filed a motion for a new trial and an acquittal. However, the judge ended up denying both requests.

Before Judge Alfred Ferguson sentenced Hardin, he asked if he had anything he wanted to say.

Hardin responded in part, “My life and future are on the line." Hardin became very emotional during his statement, fighting through tears to plead his case to the judge.

He also asked the judge to show mercy on him during sentencing.

The defense then asked the judge to consider a number of different options for sentencing, asking for the sentence to run concurrent instead of consecutive and also asking for home confinement or probation.

However, Judge Ferguson later said he didn’t feel Hardin was a good candidate for probation and ended up giving him the maximum sentence of 20-50 years in prison.

Ripley Haney, who Hardin was convicted of sexually assaulting, also gave a statement before Hardin was sentenced.

Last month after Hardin’s trial ended, Haney agreed to release her name and do an interview with WSAZ.

She told the court Friday that her physical injuries she endured that day in October of 2018 didn’t compare to the emotional trauma she has experienced since.

She also asked the judge to not just give Hardin a “slap on the wrist” but to impose the maximum sentence against him.

Before sentencing Hardin to the maximum prison sentence, Judge Ferguson had stern words for Hardin, saying he felt as though he had two-sides to him.

“A lot of people have a dark side," said Judge Ferguson. "There may be some people in here that have a dark side that only they know about. And they go through their whole life and other people don’t know about it. I think that’s the case here. When he’s in church and around people in church, he’s one guy. He may be Jekyll. It’s the other times when he’s out with women, he can be a Hyde. There can be two sides to it.”

Even after Hardin gets out of prison, he will be on 30 years of supervised release.

He will also register as a lifetime sex-offender. Hardin’s attorney tells WSAZ they have plans to appeal the case.

To see our previous coverage of this story, click here.

UPDATE 9/25/20 @ 10:40 a.m.

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) - Chase Hardin, the former student at Marshall University who was found guilty of sexually assaulting one woman has been sentenced.

The judge says Hardin is committed to DOC for a period of not less than ten but no more than 25 years for both counts.

He will have credit for time served on count three.

They will run consecutively.

The judge says Hardin isn’t a good candidate for probation.

Hardin will also have 30 years of supervision after he is released and will have a lifetime registration as a sex offender.

Keep checking the WSAZ App for the latest information.

ORIGINAL STORY 9/25/20 @ 10:23 a.m.

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) - A former student from Marshall University who was found guilty of sexually assaulting one woman is set to be sentenced.

Chase Hardin, 23, is in court Friday morning.

Hardin was found guilty of two counts of second-degree sexual assault and not guilty of two other counts of second-degree assault during a trial in August.

According to our crew in the courtroom, the defense filed a motion for acquittal and a new trial. The judge denied both after arguments from the defense and prosecution.

Once sentencing began, Hardin began speaking saying in part, “my God will judge me one day, like he will judge us all. I know I did not do this. I just ask you show mercy on me and my soul during sentencing.”

Hardin’s family also spoke saying in part, his life and future are on the line."

This is a developing story.

Keep checking the WSAZ App for the latest information.

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