Huffpost Crime

Elizabeth Coast's False Rape Claim Leads To 2 Months Jail In Virginia

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A Hampton, Virginia woman who falsely accused a man of raping her -- landing him in prison for four years -- will spend two months in jail.

Elizabeth Paige Coast, 26, will be allowed to serve her sentence on weekends. She came forward in 2012, saying that she lied about Johnathan C. Montgomery raping her. He spent four years in prison over the false claim, the Richmond Times-Dispatch reports.

Coast told a judge Monday that when she was caught by her mother looking at pornography on the internet, she said she had been sexually assaulted, blamed her neighbor. The lie snowballed from there, she said.

"I had no idea how far this lie would go," Coast said.

During Montgomery's case, Coast testified that he molested her in 2000 when he was 14 and she was 10. Montgomery was convicted and sentenced to more than seven years in prison, according to the Washington Post.

When Montgomery was arrested, Coast said she stuck by her lie.

"I was petrified of the police ... everyone in my life knew," she said. "I was afraid of what my family would think."

Despite a lack of evidence in the trial, the judge took Coast's word over Montgomery's and sentenced the innocent man.

"It's just too awful," Montgomery told the Associated Press after his 2012 release. "She can't take it back. She did what she did and she has to deal with the consequences."

The consequences for sending an innocent man to prison for four years include paying $90,000 in restitution along with her jail sentence.

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