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Mitchell Man Pleads Guilty To Battery

Last updated on Thursday, April 19, 2012

(BEDFORD) - 29-year-old Dustin Watterson, of Mitchell, pleaded guilty to battery on a child younger than 14 in a last minute plea agreement in Lawrence Circuit Court.

Initially Watterson was charged with two felony counts of child molesting.

According to the probable cause affidavit from the original charges, Watterson inappropriately touched a 13-year-old girl in July of 2009. the bench trial was set to begin in front of Judge Andrea McCord when the deal was struck between Lawrence County Prosecutor Michelle Woodward and defense attorney John Haury.

Defendants in Indiana can opt to have a trial heard by a judge instead of a jury of their peers.

McCord accepted the negotiated plea agreement that will call for Watterson to be sentenced to time served - he spent 63 days in jail - and one year of supervised probation. Also, Watterson is not to have contact with the victim or her immediate family.

The battery stemmed from incident in which he touched the 13-year-old girl in a rude and harmful manner while at his brother's house. The girl is related to Watterson's brother's wife and agreed to the plea agreement.

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