JAY - A former Jay High School basketball coach accused of raping and sexually assaulting a then-15-year-old girl has entered a guilty plea and received a 45 year sentence, with all but 15 suspended to the Oklahoma Department of Corrections.
Cory Lyndon Henton, 38, appeared before Delaware County District Court Judge Robert Haney to enter the guilty plea on Thursday, March 17, in Jay, after plea negotiations with the state.
As he stood before Haney to receive his punishment, Henton shifted from leg to leg.
Haney sentenced Henton for 16 counts of lewd molestation, rape by instrumentation, second-degree rape, having a pattern of criminal offenses, and soliciting sexual conduct and communication with a minor.
Henton will serve 85 percent of the 15 years, amounting to 12 years, nine months. He has been ordered to pay the Victim Compensation Assessment $1,000, and will be required abide by sex offender and probation rules and regulations upon his release from prison, according to Haney.
Henton will also be required to remain on probation following his eventual release from DOC for at least 25 years.
Family members of the victim wept in court, as Henton admitted guilt to all the allegations brought against him.
Before he left the courtroom, Henton waived his right to remain in the Delaware County Jail.
No information was available as of press time as to when the transport to DOC would take place. Officials with the Delaware County Sheriff's Office said the transport will take place depending upon the DOC time schedule.
Thursday's proceedings come on the heels of Henton's change of venue request, denied by Haney on March 1.
In that proceeding, Henton asked to have the venue changed away from Delaware county for his April 11 jury trial. Henton asked for the change stating the jury pool in Delaware county would be tainted by publicity.
Henton has remained incarcerated on an $800,000 bond since his second arrest on Friday, Aug. 14, 2015.
More about the charges
Henton was arrested on March 30, 2015, on two felony charges of lewd molestation in connection with alleged sexual misconduct involving a 15-year-old girl. Initially, he posted a $40,000 bond and was released from the Delaware County Jail.
On Tuesday, June 23 in district court, Henton was charged with 10 additional counts of lewd molestation, along with a charge of pattern of criminal offenses and a charge of soliciting sexual conduct or communication with minor by use of technology, all felonies.
According to court records, at the conclusion of court proceedings in June, authorities took Henton into custody. He was booked into the Delaware County Jail before being released after posting an additional $24,000 bond.
On Aug. 19, Henton appeared again before Haney, who ruled in favor of a motion to revoke and/or increase the original bond of $64,000 set on the initial 14 felony charges filed in district court on June 23.
During those proceedings, Delaware County Assistant District Attorney Nick Lelecas argued Henton had violated the no-contact ruling ordered by Delaware County Special Judge Alicia Littlefield when he contacted the alleged victim by phone and in person during the summer.
Following his arrest on Aug. 15, officials with the Delaware County District Attorney's office charged Henton with six additional felony charges, which included second-degree rape, second-degree rape by instrumentation and four counts of lewd molestation.
In addition to coaching the girl's basketball team, Henton had been employed by the Jay School District as a teacher and Assistant Softball Coach. He formally resigned from his position on March 31, according to Jay Superintendent Charles Thomas.
Henton’s teaching certificate was revoked by the Oklahoma State Department of Education during a meeting in June.