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Colorado Springs court roundup for July 11

July 11, 2014 Updated: July 11, 2014 at 9:54 pm
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A gavel sits on a desk inside the Court of Appeals at the new Ralph L. Carr Colorado Judicial Center, which celebrated its official opening on Monday Jan. 14, 2013, in Denver. (AP Photo/Brennan Linsley)

A former high school teacher's assistant pleaded not guilty to sex assault charges, a sentencing hearing was set for one of seven people charged in burglary ring, and a man accused of felony drug charges was sentenced to prison this week.

A trial date was set Monday for Benjamin Wilkerson, 27, a former Coronado High School teaching assistant and basketball coach who was arrested in February after allegedly having an inappropriate relationship with a student.

In April, two additional victims were identified, including one who came forward after the arrest, police said.

Wilkerson pleaded not guilty to multiple counts of sex offense charges, including sex assault on a child by one in a position of trust, in addition to sexual exploitation and enticement of a child, according to court documents. Both victims identified in April were between the ages of 15 and 18 at the time of the alleged offenses, police said.

A jury trial has been set for October 7.

On Thursday, 26-year-old Robert Bowick pleaded guilty to second-degree burglary and providing false information to a pawn broker, court documents state. Bowick is one of seven people arrested in a burglary case authorities said involved at least 110 victims and more than $100,000 in stolen property.

Guns, cars, jewelry, money and appliances were stolen during a series of burglaries spanning several months, authorities said. During the investigation, so much stolen property was recovered that it had to be hauled away in a 26-foot-long U-Haul truck, the Sheriff's Office said.

A sentencing hearing for Bowick has been set for September 4, according to court documents.

Carlos Estrada-Cruz,23, was sentenced to nine years in prison Monday after pleading guilty to possession with intent to distribute Schedule I and II controlled substances, according to court documents.

Estrada-Cruz and three other men were arrested in April after police searched their apartment and found 315 grams of cocaine, more than three pounds each of heroin a meth, and $44,500 in cash.

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