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— A Siloam Springs man has been sentenced to eight years in prison after admitting to sexually abusing a girl.

Alan Cravens, 50, pleaded guilty to sexual assault in the second degree, a class B felony punishable with a prison sentence ranging from five to 20 years. His plea came under an agreement Public Defender Brynna Barnica reached with Deputy Prosecutor Joni Rose.

Cravens was arrested May 20 after the victim, who is now 14, told a friend's mother about being abused by Cravens.

The mother took the girl to her school counselor.

The allegations were later reported to Siloam Springs police.

The victim claimed the abuse began when she was 11, according to courtdocuments.

Cravens denied the allegations when questioned by police but had told another person that he thought the whole thing was a dream because of the medication he was taking to sleep, according to court documents.

Circuit Judge Robin Green accepted the plea agreement and Cravens' guilty plea. Green followed the agreement's sentencing recommendation and ordered Cravens to serve eight years in the Arkansas Department of Correction.

After his release, Cravens must abide by a suspended sentence agreement for 12 years.

Cravens was also ordered to pay $2,120 in court-associated costs, register as a sex offender, enroll in and complete the prison's sex offender treatment program and not to have any contact with the victim.

News, Pages 3 on 09/23/2009

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