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Thursday, July 1st, 2010

Sex charges net eight-year prison term

By Margie Wuebker
A 19-year-old Celina man is headed to prison for eight years after pleading guilty to two counts of sexual battery involving an 8-year-old victim.
Julian D. Hummer, 5380 Erastus-Durbin Road, declined to comment before Mercer County Common Pleas Court Judge Jeffrey Ingraham imposed the sentence Wednesday morning. The judge cited several sentencing factors - the victim suffered psychological injuries exacerbated by her age and the defendant showed no remorse for his actions.
Hummer is to serve four years on each of the third-degree felonies with the time to run consecutively. Incarcerated since his November indictment, he received 205 days credit for time already served. The maximum sentence for such an offense is five years in prison.
Ingraham also classified Hummer a Tier III sex offender, meaning he must register with the appropriate sheriff's office upon his release and every 90 days thereafter for life.
Defense attorney Dan Myers told the court his client understands community control sanctions were not an option in the case.
"He's facing the fact he's heading to prison," Myers said prior to sentencing. "The question is, how long?"
He asked the sentence be no more than three years on each count.
The attorney added Hummer - a first-time offender - wants to avail himself of counseling as well as educational programs during his incarceration in hopes of coming out a "better person."
Mercer County Assistant Prosecutor Matt Fox admitted having difficulty with Myers' statement about Hummer being cooperative with counseling.
"The problem is a complete lack of accountability," Fox said. "That is the key to the future. Until he is accountable, he should not be eligible for early release."
Family and friends of the victim filled benches at the back of the gallery, but Hummer failed to look in their direction while being led from the courtroom.
The charges stem from multiple incidents occurring between January and March 2009. A relative of the girl later contacted the Mercer County Sheriff's Office about the matter and an investigation ensued.
Hummer pleaded guilty May 26 as part of a negotiated agreement that led to the dismissal of four rape charges. Sexual battery involves coercion by means that would prevent resistance.
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