DES MOINES, Iowa – Pieper Lewis pleaded guilty to a charge of escape Thursday morning in Polk County district court.
Lewis, 18, was sentenced in September after pleading guilty to involuntary manslaughter and willful injury in the 2020 death of Zachary Brooks. She was 15 at the time of the crime and claimed she was a victim of sex trafficking and Brooks had repeatedly raped her.
The judge deferred the 20-year prison sentence in her conviction and sentenced her instead to five years of probation and 600 hours of community service. She was also ordered to pay $150,000 in restitution to Brooks’ family.
Police said Lewis cut off her tracking monitor and fled the Fresh Start Women’s Center in Des Moines on November 4, 2022. She was taken back into custody a few days later.
During Thursday’s hearing, it was revealed the guilty plea was not part of any deal made with the Polk County Attorney’s Office. She faces up to 12 months in prison in the escape case. The judge also made sure she knew that pleading guilty to the charge was a probation violation on her conviction for involuntary manslaughter.
A sentencing date of March 23rd was set and will be held jointly with the probation violation hearing.