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Teen Gets 'Second Chance' After Fatally Stabbing Her Rapist

An Iowa teen who pleaded guilty in the fatal stabbing of her alleged rapist was given a "second chance" by a judge who allowed her to avoid incarceration and escape having a felony on her record. Pieper Lewis, 17, received five years of probation and a deferred judgment, which means her record could be expunged before completion of the sentence, according to the Des Moines Register. Lewis must complete 1,200 hours of community service, said Polk County District Judge David Porter. During her probation Lewis must stay at Fresh Start Women's Center while subject to GPS tracking. Additionally, Lewis must provide $150,000 in compensation for the death of Zachary Brooks. “Well, Ms. Lewis, this was the second chance you asked for. You don’t get a third. Do you understand that?” the judge asked Lewis. Initially charged with with first-degree murder, Lewis pleaded guilty to voluntary manslaughter and willful injury in June 2021.

Lewis was allegedly raped by Brooks, 37, who she had met at a party . After a series of unstable housing arrangements, Lewis slept in the hallways of an apartment complex where an acquaintance lived. There, she met the 28-year-old man who allegedly trafficked her. On May 31, 2020, Lewis said the man threatened her at knifepoint to force her to go to Brooks' apartment. Brooks picked Lewis up at 10 p.m. and planned to give the man $50 worth of marijuana in exchange for Lewis performing sex acts. Brooks gave Lewis alcohol and marijuana, she became intoxicated, and he had sex with her five times while she was unconscious over the weekend. When she woke up, Brooks was raping her. She screamed for him to get off her, but couldn't stop him, she said. The next morning, Lewis spotted a knife on a nightstand and stabbed Brooks 30 times. Lewis said she never intended to kill someone, but that she felt unsafe in the aftermath of the alleged rape. Lewis said she did not fear the prospect of going to prison, and that she hopes to go on to be a fashion designer. She also said she will become a juvenile justice advocate.


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