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Owen County Teens Change Plea In Deadly Beating Case

Last updated on Wednesday, January 7, 2009

(SPENCER) - Two Owen County teens accused of beating a man to death on New Year’s Day have changed their pleas to not guilty, however, their charges may not be changed from just aggravated battery since the victim reportedly walked away from the fight.

The Bloomington Herald Times reports 18-year-old Travis Raber and 19-year-old Matthew Walker initially pled guilty Monday to aggravated battery charges, however, the victim of the fight, 31-year-old Richard Pursel, passed away Sunday at Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis.

The paper says Pursel was able to walk away from the fight. Pursel left with his girlfriend to his mother's home in Putnam County and went to sleep, but was unresponsive the following morning.

With the appointment of a public defender, the teens' plea will be amended to "not guilty."

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