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Forum News Service, Published January 27 2014

Duluth man sentenced to prison for sexually assaulting 88-year-old

DULUTH, Minn. — A Duluth man who admitted to raping an 88-year-old resident of a Hermantown senior living facility where he worked as a nursing assistant was sentenced to more than four years in prison Monday.

Andrew Scott Merzwski, 29, received a 53-month sentence from Judge Sally Tarnowski, per the terms of a plea agreement. He also will need to register as a predatory offender for 10 years and has been ordered to pay more than $1,000 in restitution to the victim.

Merzwski pleaded guilty Nov. 25 to third-degree criminal sexual conduct. The prosecution, in exchange, dropped a first-degree criminal sexual conduct charge.

The Duluth man admitted at that hearing that he engaged in sexual intercourse with the woman against her wishes on the night of Jan. 18, 2013.

Edgewood Management Group has headquarters in Grand Forks, N.D., operates 42 senior-living facilities in seven states and employs nearly 2,000 people, according to its website.

Merzwski, Edgewood Vista and two administrators also are named in a civil suit filed by the woman, who is seeking punitive damages.