Update on the Naked Prosecutor:
I posted last month on the strange case of Scott Blauvelt, an Ohio prosecutor who was charged with public indecency after being seen on videotape walking around the office naked late at night. The latest news in the case is that Blauvelt was fired from his job, and his criminal case was recently dismissed without prejudice. It seems likely that new charges will be filed, however:
Charges of public indecency were dropped Tuesday against an ex-city prosecutor because of a paperwork problem.I wonder if Dwyer is telling the truth, and the the decision to charge was based on the proper version of the offense. It's certainly possible: officials will often file an information based on a "go by," an example used in a prior case, and someone just may not have checked to see if the law was updated in the form that was filed. On the other hand, it's also quite possible that the Sheriff's office just goofed from the beginning, and that charges were filed based on a mistaken understanding of the law. Stay tuned.
But officials said they would re-file the case against Scott Blauvelt, who has been accused of walking through public buildings after hours in the nude.
"A technicality is causing us to re-file the paperwork," Butler County Sheriff's Chief Deputy Anthony Dwyer said Tuesday.
Blauvelt's lawyer, Mike Gmoser, railed against some officials' use of the term "technicality," and hung up on a reporter who sought more information.
Blauvelt had pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity to two counts of public indecency in Municipal Court, where he worked from March 2005 until he was fired last month. A judge dismissed the charges Tuesday after authorities acknowledged they were filed under an outdated section of law.
A city computer system printed out the old law when charges were filed in Blauvelt's case, Dwyer said, and sheriff's Capt. Katie McMahon didn't notice the problem at the time.
Under an update of the law last year, the offense of public indecency must occur in "physical proximity" to another person who is unrelated to the suspect, officials said. Therefore, Gmoser argues, it is insufficient for a suspect to be caught on videotape, as Blauvelt allegedly was.
Dwyer said sheriff's officials feel confident that the current, updated law applies to Blauvelt's case. Sheriff's officials reviewed the correct section of law when deciding what charges to lodge, he said.