Guerdwich Montimere, the former Dillard High School basketball player who moved to Texas when he was 22 and reinvented himself as a 16-year-old, came clean in the legal sense yesterday.
He pleaded guilty to two counts of sexual assault of a child -- for having sex with a 15-year-old girl he dated while attending a Texas high school -- and three counts of tampering with government records. The judge sentenced him to three years in prison, with credit for the year he's already spent in jail.
But for this bizarre sports scandal, which rocked the small town of Odessa, Texas, and bewildered the basketball community in Fort Lauderdale, perhaps the most significant moment in the courtroom came when Montimere told the judge his real name. Previously,
he had insisted he was Jerry Joseph, the name he adopted and was baptized under, when he moved to Odessa and told residents he was a Haitian orphan.
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Former New Times writer Michael J. Mooney chronicled Montimere's story in GQ this month. When Mooney visited Montimere in jail, the basketball player's faith in his new identity was unwavering.
"I persevere with God in my heart," he said. "He knows me by name... My name is Jerry."
Yesterday, the judge asked if he was Guerdwich Montimere.
"Yes, sir, I am," came the reply.