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MAN ADMITS GUILT IN MOLESTATION: Drug charges dismissed as part of plea agreement

July 9, 2013

COLUMBIA CITY — A Larwill man pleaded guilty to child molestation and two other crimes in Whitley County Circuit Court Monday.

Dean Pressler, 40, was arrested in January and charged with child molestation, sexual misconduct with a minor, child seduction, possession of child pornography and confinement.

That arrest came on the heels of charges of running a meth lab, which were brought against Pressler in December of 2012.

As part of a plea agreement, Pressler admitted to molesting a child, 13 years of age, and continuing the sexual contact until the girl was 17.

The drug charges, child pornography possession and confinement counts were dismissed.

Sentencing, which will be held Aug. 5, will be to the discretion of Judge James Heuer. Child molestation is a Class A felony, which carries a sentencing range of 20 to 50 years. Sexual misconduct with a minor is a Class B felony, which has a sentencing period of 6 to 20 years.

The third charge, sexual misconduct with a minor, has a sentencing range of six months to three years but, as part of the plea arrangement, that crime will be sentenced concurrently with count two.

Heuer explained his sentencing options range from a minimum of 20 years to a maximum of 70, with the minimum coming from 20 years for the A felony and sentencing the B felony concurrently with that first charge.

A final concession in the plea agreement is the acknowledgement that the child was 13 or older when the sex acts occurred.

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