Young woman who beat Mark Andrew receives no jail time -- at his request

The teenager who severely beat former Hennepin County Board Chair Mark Andrew last year will receive 14 weeks of intensive therapy and a year-long immersion in an arts program of her choice.

Deea LeShawn Elliot, who is now 18, pleaded guilty to first degree assault for attacking Andrew last December with a metal baton after an accomplice stole his cell phone.

She could have been sent to prison for decades. But at Andrew's request, a judge agreed Tuesday to a special sentence that includes no jail time.

2013: Mark Andrew beaten with metal baton at Mall of America

"I believe strongly that there is redemption," Andrew said. "She can turn her life around. The way to turn it around is not to send her to prison where she's going to reinforce bad habits."

Instead of jail time, Andrews has asked that Elliot, another young woman who was a juvenile at the time and Letaija Shapree Cutler-Cain, who was then 18, be ordered to undergo mandatory counseling, anger management and family counseling. He also sought mandatory high school graduation at grade level and the arts study.

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If those conditions are not met, he asked that they receive prison time.

"I believe in human kind and I believe in restorative justice," Andrew said. "And I don't think harsh prison terms for three youngsters - one a legal adult and the other two juveniles. I didn't see the value in incarcerating any of these three for a long period of time."

Andrew still has physical healing to do from a back injury he suffered during the assault. He also received head injuries, broken teeth and a concussion.

In court on Tuesday, he met face-to-face with Elliot, who repeatedly told him she was sorry. He was deeply moved by the experience.

"She came over to me and apologized, and I hugged her, and she just broke down in my arms," Andrew said. "To me, it was a beautiful moment, because I could see how badly she felt. It was very, very healing."