Ex-Texas sheriff pleads guilty in sex assault case

Wichita Falls_A former North Texas sheriff has pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting a woman, telling her sex was the only way to avoid going to jail for drug possession.

Former Montague County Sheriff Bill Keating entered his plea Thursday in a Wichita Falls federal court. He'll be sentenced in May and faces up to 10 years in prison.

The magistrate judge says Keating won't be detained because he's not considered a threat to society. However, the judge says he must surrender his weapons and meet other conditions.

Keating, 61, had admitted to forcing the woman to perform a sex act, a federal prosecutor said.

Keating served one term after being elected in 2004. He was defeated in a runoff after the March primary election. The asault took place in November, before his replacement was sworn in.

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