Pennsylvania Woman Sentenced to 5 to 10 Months Behind Bars for Gay Bashing

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The woman convicted of misdemeanor assault charges in the 2014 beating of a gay couple in Philadelphia will spend up to 10 months behind bars, according to media reports.

A judge sentenced Kathryn Knott, 25, to five to 10 months in jail Monday, for taking part in an assault that led Philadelphia to expand its hate crime laws to include sexual orientation, reports Philadelphia TV station KYW.

A jury in December acquitted Knott of the most serious charges stemming from the attack, felony aggravated assault, but convicted her of simple assault, reckless endangerment, and conspiracy.

Knott, the daughter of a Bucks County police chief, was downtown in Phildelphia's City Center celebrating a birthday with friends on the night of the attack in September 2014, when the group — including several alumni from the Catholic high school Knott attended — came upon the same-sex couple, who were reportedly walking to the city's popular LGBT neighborhood to get a pizza.  

According to KYW, witnesses told police someone in Knott’s group shouted a gay slur, sparking a fight that left one victim with a broken jaw. During the trial, witnesses claimed that Knott had thrown a punch during the attack— though Knott denied punching anyone, and said she had actually stepped in to intervene on behalf of the victims.  

After hearing testimony and reviewing a portion of the attack that was captured on surveillance video, the judge determined that Knott did indeed throw a punch at one victim, then walked away as the other lay bleeding in the street.

While Knott insisted on a jury trial, two men also arrested in the attack struck a plea deal with prosecutors. Philip Williams and Kevin Harrigan pleaded guilty to assault and conspiracy charges in October, and are serving probation and community service.

Watch a report from Philadelphia TV station WCAU below.

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