Thursday, March 8th, 2007
By Margie Wuebker
Man sentenced for molestation charge
A Mendon man who pleaded no contest to sexually molesting a 9-year-old girl is headed to prison following a Wednesday morning appearance in Mercer County Common Pleas Court.
Craig A. Junod, 53, 7749 Denny Road, was remanded to the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Corrections for a period of three years. Judge Jeffrey Ingraham granted credit for 31 days already served following the April indictment.
Junod also was classified a sexually-oriented offender meaning he must register his address with the appropriate sheriff's office upon his release from prison and annually thereafter for a period of 10 years.
Defense attorney Peter Van Arsdel asked Ingraham to consider community control sanctions with intensive supervision and counseling to address his client's underlying problems.
He pointed out that Junod, who is self-employed doing maintenance work, clearing woods and cutting firewood, had contacted Foundations Behavioral Center regarding counseling. However, Ingraham later ascertained the initial contact had not resulted in any sessions.
"I'm truly sorry for any pain I caused," Junod said without turning around to address the victim or members of her family.
Mercer County Assistant Prosecutor Matt Fox argued CCS was not consistent with the practices and principles of the Ohio Revised Code in this case. He also noted Junod has denied the sexual conduct despite the no contest plea entered Jan. 31.
Referring to the victim impact statement from the young girl, he cited phrases that "jump out of the page." They include being angry, depressed and subject to mood swings following a series of events that reportedly occurred between January and April of last year.
"You had a chance to hear from her during a competency hearing," Fox told the court. "She is an extremely intelligent girl who was able to tell what happened to her."
Although Ingraham found her competent to testify in the event of a trial, such a proceeding was averted through a negotiated plea. In exchange for Junod admitting to a stipulation of facts supporting one count of gross sexual imposition, the state dismissed three similar third-degree felonies.
In regard to preliminary findings pertinent to sentencing, Ingraham said the victim suffered serious psychological harm and the defendant had failed to show remorse in presentence and psychosexual investigations.
Junod showed no emotion during the proceeding but the young victim leaned against a relative's shoulder from time to time. They left the courtroom before Junod was led away in handcuffs.
The third-degree felony carried the possibility of up to five years in prison and a $10,000 fine. No fine was imposed.
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