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Published: Thursday, March 14, 2019 @ 12:15 PM
By: Lawrence Budd - Staff Writer
LEBANON — A 59-year-old Franklin man was found guilty this morning of gross sexual imposition of a developmentally disabled 4-year-old boy more than seven years ago.
A jury found Jerry Hurst of Franklin guilty of that felony charge but deadlocked on a rape charge on the fourth day of a trial in Warren County Common Pleas Court.
Hurst, who had been free on bond, was taken back into custody after the jury reached the verdict on the sexual imposition charge.
Assistant County Prosecutor Teresa Hiett urged the jury to find Hurst guilty despite questions about the evidence, including uncertainty about when it happened and the boy’s testimony.
Hurst’s lawyer, Barry Spaeth, said the trial left “plenty of reasonable doubt” supporting a not-guilty verdict, claiming there was “a pretty good chance somebody put those words in his mouth.”