Forks woman pleads guilty to rape

QUEENSBURY - An Au Sable Forks woman is now on probation after admitting to having sex with a teenage boy.

Joey Strong, a 36-year-old mother and former youth basketball coach, appeared in Warren County Court Feb. 22 and pleaded guilty to third degree rape.

"She cried through the whole court appearance and was tremendously remorseful," said Warren County District Attorney Kate Hogan.

Strong had been arrested in April 2009 after police say she had sex with a then-16-year-old boy while staying in a Queensbury motel in late March.

The alleged incident occurred while Strong was chaperoning a group of teenage boys, including her son, for a basketball tournament in Glens Falls. Police say Strong supplied at least four of the boys with alcohol, including the alleged victim.

Strong was not accused of forcing the boy to have sex, but was charged based on the victim's age. The legal age of consent is 17 in New York State.

In addition to third-degree rape, a felony, Strong was also indicted on misdemeanor charges of endangering the welfare of a child and unlawfully dealing with a child. Her guilty plea to rape satisfied all the charges.

Strong, who had volunteered for eight years as the girls basketball coach at Holy Name School, had been on conditional release since the time of her arrest.

As a result of her guilty plea, the court placed her on interim probation for the next six months. During that time, she must register as a sex offender, attend sex offender counseling, and any drug or alcohol treatment deemed necessary.

"After six months, if she does well, the court will sentence her to 10 years probation," Hogan explained. "If she does not do well, she faces up to one to one-and-three-quarters [years] in state prison."

The court also directed for a full no-contact order that prohibits any interaction between Strong and the victim, Hogan said.

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