Ex-Michigan prosecutor who paid for sex gets year in jail

AP News
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Posted: Nov 22, 2016 4:45 PM

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — A man who was accused of hiring prostitutes hundreds of times during his 20-year career as a Michigan prosecutor was sentenced Tuesday to a year in jail.

Stuart Dunnings III, who was the prosecutor for Ingham County, which includes the state capital of Lansing, pleaded guilty in August to misconduct in office and soliciting a prostitute in exchange for many other charges being dismissed.

His arrest in March stemmed from a federal investigation into human trafficking by the FBI. He officially resigned in July.

Prosecutors said Dunnings, 64, paid women for sex over several years, including in his office during working hours. They recommended that Dunnings serve several years in prison.

At the hearing, Dunnings said he has a sex addiction and is being treated for it, but his attorney denied that he engaged in sexual activities in his office. Dunnings broke down while speaking to the court, saying he "violated his oath" and "betrayed the trust" of his wife, family, colleagues and community.

"I don't know what happened to me," Dunnings said, adding that he was diagnosed with an anxiety disorder and his therapist believes it had to do with the death of his father in 2010. "I went off the rails."

Dunnings was prosecuted by the office of Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette and sentenced by Genesee County Circuit Judge Joseph Farah after Ingham County judges recused themselves.

Farah said Dunnings must report to county jail authorities by Friday and the judge added he would deny any request to reduce the jail time.

Schuette expressed disappointment with the sentence, saying Dunnings should have been sent to prison for at least two years.

"Someone who holds the public trust, someone who's charged with enforcing the law who broke the law, in my opinion deserves time behind bars," Schuette told reporters.

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Eggert reported from Lansing.