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Alleged blackmailer sentenced for sexual assault

An Eagle River woman was sentenced to four years in prison Friday for felony sexual assault after allegedly trying to blackmail a married JBER airman, law enforcement officials said.

Lagina Griffiths, 41, was convicted in Superior Court of second-degree sexual assault after a plea deal with prosecutors. She'll also have to register as a sex offender and serve five years of probation after her release, said state prosecutor Jack McKeena in an email.

In August of 2012, Griffiths met the airman stationed at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson at the now-closed Rumrunner's bar in downtown Anchorage. The two were drinking and ended up at her Eagle River home, police said at the time. The married airman woke up in the middle of the night to find Griffiths performing "sex acts," police said.

A few days later, the airman told the Air Force Office of Special Investigations and Anchorage police that Griffiths had contacted him and made coercive threats related to the encounter. A search warrant turned up physical evidence detailing the threats, police said.

Griffiths was arrested and charged with two counts of sexual assault and one count of coercion.

She had faced anywhere from 2-12 years at sentencing. However, Judge Michael Spaan factored in her otherwise clean record and prospects for rehabilitation in determining Griffith's sentence, McKenna said..

By Anchorage Daily News / adn.com