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Published: Tuesday, 12/11/2001

Felony-counts hearing set for Erie County official

SANDUSKY — Erie County Commissioner Harold Butcher will appear in court next week for a preliminary hearing on two felony counts of compelling prostitution in connection with his Nov. 11 arrest.

Mr. Butcher, 69, a commissioner since 1994, is scheduled for a preliminary hearing at 11 a.m. Dec. 20 in Sandusky Municipal Court on the felony charges. Initially, he was charged with solicitation, a misdemeanor, after he allegedly offered two Sandusky girls, ages 14 and 16, money for sex.

The solicitation charge was dismissed Friday and replaced by the two more serious counts, one a second-degree felony and the other a third-degree felony.

Mr. Butcher still faces a Sandusky charge of driving under the influence, plus misdemeanor counts of driving under the influence, failure to control, and driving under suspension filed Nov. 12.

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