Monday, November 10, 2008

Mental patient's sex charges reduced to unlawful restraint

Jason Haegler, 36, of Woodstock, Illinois, was released from Lake County Jail after serving 28 months while awaiting trial. The man plead guilty to unlawful restraint after a sexual encounter with a female mental health patient after they were both undergoing treatment. Prosecutors dropped sex charges because they felt that they could not prove their original case. Haegler's sentence was 364 days in jail, far less than time served.

Haegler was arrested in the summer of 2006 after a mental patient at Advocate Good Shepherd Hospital in Lake Barrington said she had sex with him in a hospital bathroom. Haegler met the 21-year-old woman while he was undergoing mental evaluation. The two talked and agreed to have sex in a bathroom inside his hospital room, said prosecutor Reggie Mathews.
Haegler was charged with sexual assault because the woman was not of the mental mindset to give consent, Mathews said.

In Illinois, unlawful restraint is a Class 4 felony, punishable by 1 to 3 years in prison. Presumably, Haegler won't have to register as a sex offender (non sexual crimes can require registration if sexual motives are found to play a role).

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