Rapist pleads guilty to address violation

Cary Ashby • Apr 20, 2014 at 2:07 PM

A convicted rapist pleaded guilty Thursday to attempted failure to notify authorities of changing his address.

Former Norwalk resident Joshua D. Baldwin, 25, now of Lorain, was convicted of an amended charge which was lowered from a third-degree to a fourth-degree felony. He won't be eligible for a prison term when he is sentenced June 4 if he doesn't have a prior conviction.

Huron County Public Defender David Longo said it's unclear if Baldwin has a felony conviction as an adult. While there's no record of one on his complete criminal history, Longo said the defendant told him he's on the diversion program through Lorain County.

Baldwin's local conviction is for a Jan. 24 incident when he didn't notify the Huron County Sheriff's Office about changing his address.

Huron County Assistant Prosecutor Daivia Kasper said Baldwin's address was listed in Norwalk and an informant told deputies the defendant hadn't lived there for two years. Longo disagreed with the two-year reference, saying Baldwin had used the residence as his "proper address" when he registered.

In 2005, Baldwin was convicted of rape through Lorain County Juvenile Court when he was a juvenile defendant.

"He has a 10-year registration requirement," Kasper said.

Baldwin will be held in the Huron County Jail until he completes his interview for his pre-sentence investigation. Afterward, he will be released into the custody of the Lorain County Sheriff's Office on an undisclosed charge.

Kasper stressed in court the importance of Baldwin registering his new address with the Huron County Sheriff's Office once he is out of jail. The defendant plans to live with his stepmother in Lorain.

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