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Greenwich man, 81, convicted of sex offense

Cary Ashby • Jan 15, 2014 at 5:07 PM

An elderly Greenwich man admitted Tuesday to inappropriately touching a teenage female relative.

Robert E. Shultz, 81, of 11 W. Union St., pleaded guilty to one count of unlawful sexual conduct with a minor. According to Huron County Common Pleas Court records, the third-degree felony happened between Nov. 1, 2012 and Jan. 31.

When Shultz is sentenced Feb. 27, he faces one to five years in prison. The conviction means once he is released, he will have to register his address with the Huron County Sheriff's Office every six months for the next 25 years. Shultz will be prohibited from living within 1,000 feet of a school, preschool or daycare center.

As part of a plea deal Tuesday, Huron County Prosecutor Russell Leffler agreed to dismiss two counts of unlawful sexual conduct with a minor and one charge of sexual battery.

Leffler said the state stands behind the videotaped interview between Shultz and police that was shown to the court during a hearing about defense attorney James Joel Sitterly's motion to suppress evidence. In November, Greenwich Police Officer Aaron Smith testified about a nearly 31-minute-long interview he did with Shultz at the police station April 5 in which he admitted he inappropriately touched a 15-year-old Richland County girl, Shultz's relative.

Shultz, during the interview, first denied having anything to do with the girl, but later said he touched her -- possibly with small, wood sticks or dowels he kept in his garage.

"She has shown me her underwear and stuff," he told the officer. "She showed me hers. ... She took down her pants."

At Tuesday's hearing, Judge Jim Conway asked Shultz if the interview was an "accurate representation" of what he told the officer. Shultz said it was, but he claimed he couldn't "remember most of what was said."

Police began investigating the case after Richland County Children Services contacted Chief Steve Dorsey in April. The girl has reported having sexual conduct with two men, one of whom is a 76-year-old Ashland County suspect. The Richland County Sheriff's Office is handling the other case.

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