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The Daily



12-09-03: Maria Stein man fined for pushing prankster


A Maria Stein man was fined $500 for assault Monday morning in Celina Municipal Court. The charge stems from an incident in which he pushed a 12-year-old neighbor boy causing him to fall and break both wrists.
Gregory S. Garmann, 39, who currently resides at 7951 Minster-Fort Recovery Road and serves as president of the Marion Local Schools board of education, was found guilty of the first-degree misdemeanor. He pleaded no contest during an earlier appearance.
The incident occurred at 1:10 a.m. July 18 in Maria Stein’s Chapel Hill subdivision and the charge was filed in September following an investigation by the Mercer County Sheriff’s Office.
The sheriff’s report said Garmann was awakened at 11:50 p.m. July 17 by the sound of a doorbell. It turned out to be another “knock and run” episode where perpetrators rouse a family before scurrying away.
Around 1 a.m., the Garmanns were awakened again by voices and rustling noises near the front porch of their former Oak Street home, according to the sheriff’s report. Garmann saw three figures on the property and noticed his home had been toilet-papered.
While cleaning up the mess, Garmann reportedly saw a figure moving in a nearby yard. He intended to find out the identity of the person when two figures suddenly ran past him. Garmann told authorities he raised his arm and the resulting contact knocked the victim into a bush.
The boy reportedly apologized and agreed to help clean up the mess. When it appeared Garmann was leaving to find the others, the youth also left intending to locate his friends, he later told authorities.
Garmann apparently thought the boy was trying to flee again and chased after him, according to sheriff’s office reports. The victim claimed Garmann pushed him, resulting in him falling and breaking his wrists. The other boys, who also live in the Chapel Hill neighborhood, did not witness the interaction.
A deputy responded to Mercer County Community Hospital in Coldwater and spoke with the boy’s mother. Sheriff Jeff Grey subsequently turned the case over to a detective who conducted the follow-up investigation.
Garmann said nothing during the Monday morning sentencing. He sat quietly at the defense table with his wife on one side and his attorney, Lou Schiavone, on the other. The victim’s family watched from front-row seats.
Schiavone called the circumstances that led to the first-degree misdemeanor charge “unfortunate” and “unusual.” He also noted restitution for incurred medical expenses has been made.
Judge James Scheer noted none of the parties involved wanted a jail sentence, adding “there are times people wish in hindsight they could turn the clock back.”
He explained assault — which carries a fine of up to $1,000 — involves some sort of striking, touching or pushing. He added the July 18 incident, which had serious consequences, was not an unprovoked attack worthy of the maximum. However, he added it certainly deserved more than no fine.


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