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Rape cases go to grand jury

Scott Seitz • Aug 4, 2013 at 7:35 PM

A pair of Jefferson Street men charged with a number of sex crimes had their cases transferred to Huron County Common Pleas Court on Thursday.

Norwalk Municipal Court Judge Eric Weisenburger ruled there was probable cause in the cases involving Justin Collins, 19, and Jason Wooten, 36, both of 37 Jefferson St.

Huron County Sheriff’s Detective Kayla Zander and Deputy Rich Larson each provided brief testimony during Thursday’s hearing. Zander and Larson were involved in the original questioning of Collins, while Zander, Larson and Sheriff Dane Howard interrogated Wooten.

The prosecution was led by Norwalk Law Director Stuart O’Hara.

The cases now will be presented to a Huron County grand jury for possible indictment.

Collins is facing charges of rape and unlawful contact with a minor and remains in custody at the Huron County Jail. He must post a $125,000 bond before being released.

Wooten has been charged with gross sexual imposition through Norwalk Municipal Court and four counts of rape and seven charges of gross sexual imposition through Bellevue Municipal Court. He is incarcerated at the jail in lieu of posting a $230,000 bond.

The suspected incidents discussed Thursday took place in Norwalk and involved girls ages 13 and 10.

At Thursday’s preliminary hearing, Collins was represented by Norwalk attorney T. Douglas Clifford. Defense attorney James Joel Sitterly is representing Wooten.

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