STILLWATER, Minn. - A man accused of holding 11 people hostage and sexually assaulting four teenage girls at gunpoint in a Minnesota motel room has been sentenced to 36 years in prison.
Demetrius Ballinger got the sentence that prosecutors asked for. He was initially charged with 27 felonies, but pleaded guilty to five felonies.
The complaint says Ballinger, five other adults and six juveniles were in a room at the Red Roof Inn in Woodbury in August 2012 when Ballinger pulled a gun, threatening to shoot everyone and ordering them to hand over money and cellphones.
After police arrived, a 19-year-old hostage, Mark Henderson, tried to escape. Ballinger shot at him. Officers heard that gunshot as the door opened and fired, believing Henderson was armed. He was not, and died at a hospital.
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