JRL, a 40-year-old mechanic, was charged with Indecent Assault and Battery after it was alleged that he touched a female’s breast area and groin area without her consent. JRL and the female, a student at a local middle school, began chatting online on a dating website. The female asked JRL to pick her up from school. He agreed, albeit reluctantly. After she snuck out of class, she met JRL on the sidewalk near the school. She got into his car. Once inside the car she says that JRL touched her inappropriately. She became upset and asked JRL to take her back to school. He did so. Upon returning to school she told staff that she had been in a “stranger’s van.” The school called the police. The police eventually tracked down JRL.
At JRL’s arraignment he was held on $100,000 cash bail. The local press was on hand, and the case was presented as if JRL was a predator. This was absurd. As was later uncovered, the female had asked JRL online to have sex. Had also told him that she was 18 (when, in fact, she was only 15). Boston Defense Attorney Henry Fasoldt appealed the bail on three different occasions; twice to the Superior Court, once more in the District Court. Unfortunately, all those appeals were denied. Henry even filed a 211/3 petition to a Single Justice of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court – that was also denied. Therefore, JRL sat in jail on an egregiously excessive bail for 7 1/2 months.
JRL had no previous criminal record (except a charge of operating a motor vehicle without a licensef rom fourteen years ago.)
JRL and Henry prepared for trial, and although Henry thought that JRL had a good chance of an acquittal, JRL elected to take a plea deal. The plea deal involved making an admission on the record to the touching. Fortunately, it is not considered a “conviction.” Moreover, JRL will not be required to Register as a Sex Offender.