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Iowa man to plead guilty

10/22/2003

DENVER -- An Iowa college student charged with leaving a
profanity-laced death threat on the answering machine of Kobe Bryant's accuser has agreed to plead guilty.

John Roche, 22, is accused of leaving a profanity-laced message
on the woman's answering machine July 27, threatening to assault
her with a coat hanger and repeatedly vowing to kill her.

He pleaded not guilty on Sept. 2 but said in court papers made
available Tuesday he would change his plea. A hearing was scheduled
for Nov. 24.

Roche is charged with making a threatening telephone call across
state lines, which carries a sentence of up to five years in prison
and a $250,000 fine.

Prosecutors would not say whether Roche will plead guilty to the
original charge or a different one. Roche's lawyer, Nathan
Chambers, did not return an after-hours telephone message.

Roche was a student at the University of Iowa at the time of the
alleged threat but withdrew and moved to his parents' home in
Davenport, Iowa.

Bryant, 25, is charged with sexually assaulting a 19-year-old
Colorado resort employee June 30. A judge ordered Bryant to stand
trial on Tuesday, but no date has been sent.