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Published: Thursday, 10/6/2005

Appeal reduces man's sentence for sex assault of 2 preteen girls

A Georgia man originally sentenced to 30 years in prison for abducting and sexually assaulting two 12-year-old girls in West Toledo last year had his sentenced reduced to 26 years in response to an appeal.

Daniel Cole was sentenced in March by Lucas County Common Pleas Court Judge Ruth Ann Franks to 10 years each on two counts of kidnapping and five years each on two counts of gross sexual imposition.

Assistant Prosecutor Tracy Sniderhan said there was a previous plea agreement for 26 years, eight years each on the kidnapping and four years each on the gross sexual imposition in connection with the case.

"We didn't catch it during sentencing," Mr. Sniderhan said. "I missed it. The defense missed it. We all missed it."

Lori Olender, another assistant prosecutor, said the issue of the sentence and the plea agreement came up as one of Cole's appeals, and Judge Franks decided to resentence him yesterday.

"This was the sentence the family had already agreed to," Ms. Olender said.

Cole, 37, had handcuffs, duct tape, nylon tie straps, and pornography in his car on Oct. 30, 2004, when he posed as a security officer to lure the girls from the Miracle Mile Shopping Center.

He bound their feet with straps and handcuffed them, putting one in the trunk and the other on the floor of the front seat. He later stopped the car and reversed them.

The girls were taken to a West Toledo neighborhood, where he led one to a wooded area and sexually assaulted her. He then fondled the other victim while she was in the trunk of the car.

The girls were released at a West Toledo apartment complex, and Cole, who was arrested the next morning at the home of his father and stepmother, told investigators he couldn't recall his intentions when he took the girls.

Cole committed the crimes within six months of being released from a Georgia prison for child molestation and violated his parole there.

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