Mercer County State’s Attorney Fights Motion To Withdraw Guilty Plea In Aledo Sex Assault Case

Mercer County State’s Attorney Meeghan Lee is challenging a motion filed by a former Aledo man serving 20-years in prison for a criminal sexual assault conviction. 31 year old Ryan Bell wants to withdraw his guilty plea in the 2006 case. A hearing date has not been scheduled.
Bell pleaded guilty to the Class 1 felony in October 2006 and received the 20-year prison term the following May. The charge stemmed from a May of 2006 incident involving a 15-year-old girl at an underage drinking party in Aledo. Court testimony indicated the victim may have been drugged. Four juveniles were also charged in the case with aggravated battery and attempted criminal sexual assault. Three were placed on probation and one was sentenced to 90 days at a juvenile detention facility. Bell is currently incarcerated at the Vienna Correctional Center in southern Illinois. He has been denied in previous post-conviction relief attempts and appeals and was also denied executive clemency last summer.