Michael Begin appeals 120-year sentence for child molesting

Michael Begin appeals 120-year sentence for child molesting
Begin was sentenced to 120 years for the molestation of 20 young girls. (Source: WAVE 3 News)

JEFFERSONVILLE, In. (NEWS AND TRIBUNE) - A man sentenced to 120 years for molesting 20 children between 3 and 8 years old in Jeffersonville has appealed his prison time.

Michael Begin, 20, pleaded guilty in January to 20 counts of level 4 felony child molestation related to victims he had encountered while overseeing or working with children at Thomas Jefferson Elementary School and the Clark County YMCA between January and October 2017.

Begin was ultimately charged with 27 counts of level 1 felony child molestation, but the plea agreement amended those to 20 — one for each of the victims. Because he’d pleaded guilty, the charges aren’t able to be appealed, only the sentence.

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On April 26, after hearing from family members of eight of the children, Clark County Circuit Court No. 1 Judge Andrew Adams passed down the maximum sentence of 120 years, but with the final 20 to be served on probation.

Clark County Prosecutor Jeremy Mull had requested the full 120 years; Jennifer Culotta, Begin's attorney in the case, had requested he serve 40 years, and said following the hearing that day they planned to appeal the sentence. On May 20, a notice of appeal was filed and on June 6, the transcript had been completed and the case ready for the next step in the process, online court records show.

Begin has been transported to the Indiana Department of Correction. According to online jail records, his earliest release date with good time credit is 2092.

Aprile Rickert is the crime and courts reporter at the News and Tribune. Contact her via email at aprile.rickert@newsandtribune.com or by phone at 812-206-2115. Follow her on Twitter: @Aperoll27.

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