Southern Charm fans were shocked this morning when former politician and reality star Thomas Ravenel pleaded guilty to assaulting the former family nanny. In return, Ravenel received a nominal fine and a 30 day suspended jail sentence, meaning that he would only serve time if he is arrested again.
Earlier today, The Inquisitr reported that Ravenel had arrived in court, reportedly being prepared to plead guilty in the assault case against him. Despite having made numerous statements in the past that he was totally innocent of the charges, the disgraced politician's legal team worked out a deal which would keep him from returning to prison.
A reporter for WMBF was in the courtroom when Ravenel told the judge that he was pleading guilty, and that he agreed with the facts in the complaint filed against him by the Ravenel family nanny. A letter written by the victim was read aloud in court, explaining that on the night in question, she feared for her life as Ravenel grabbed at her private parts, forcing her hand onto his bare genitals.
Nanny Dawn stated that she was strangled with her own bra -- with "the underwire cutting her skin" as she struggled to breathe and free herself -- while his daughter slept. Ravenel did not dispute the complaint.Ravenel spoke briefly to the judge, admitting that he knows it was wrong to force himself onto the nanny, one who was working in his home that night while he went out with friends.
"Your honor, on the night of the incident I did attempt to kiss her and in so doing I grabbed her arm and that was wrong, and I am much appreciative of the opportunity to apologize to her in court today."The former state treasurer is to pay a $500 fine, and will only serve time behind bars for his crime if he violates his probation with another arrest. When Thomas Ravenel was arrested and booked on charges of sexual assault last year, he strongly denied any wrongdoing in the matter, according to The Hollywood Reporter, suggesting that it was a money grab on behalf of the victim -- or perhaps a conspiracy, potentially involving women he had allegedly spurned.
His lawyer at the time released a statement on his behalf.
"My client enjoys a certain degree of fame and unfortunately has become — unfairly — a target for an individual who has, in my opinion, dubious motivations."Ravenel has had prior convictions on charges of drunken driving and federal cocaine possession and distribution, which sent him to prison for 10 months in 2007. As a result of this conviction, Ravenel was forced to resign as state treasurer, and went to rehab for cocaine addiction.