Saturday, December 29, 2001 @ 3:34 PM
Marilyn Manson Felony Charge O
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As the balls turn….
On Friday, December 28th, the felony charge of criminal sexual conduct against Marilyn Manson (a.k.a. Brian Warner) for the July 30th crotch rubbing incident was reduced to a misdemeanor. The charge is one of two stemming from the incident at the DTE Energy Music Theatre where the shock rocker allegedly rubbed his crotch on a security guard's head during a performance.
Clarkston, Michigan, Judge Gerald E. McNally heard testimony from the victim and a witness (another security guard who worked at the concert) during a preliminary examination of the charges. McNally was not persuaded that the offense warranted a felony charge and lessened it to a misdemeanor disorderly persons charge, though the second charge of misdemeanor assault and battery is still pending. If Manson were to be convicted on both counts, he could face up to 90 days in jail.
"Legally, I don't think his ruling was correct," said assistant prosecutor Ken Frazee to MTV News, who'll have approximately a month and a half to appeal the decision.
Walter Piszczatowski, Manson's attorney, was prepared to show the court a videotape of the incident that occurred, in which Manson allegedly approached 25-year-old Joshua Keasler, spit on the man's head and proceeded to rub his G-string-clad crotch on Keasler's head and neck. However, McNally made his decision without seeing the video.
A copy of the tape was given to the prosecution, and Piszczatowski believes that after Keasler and his legal counsel view it, they will not appeal and the two parties will resolve the matter out of court before a pretrial hearing scheduled for March 18th.
Manson pleaded not guilty to felony fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct and misdemeanor assault and battery on September 21st. He attended the hearing but was not called to testify.
Earlier this month, a second man, from Minnesota, claimed to have also been victimized by Manson's stage act and filed a $75,000 civil suit against him. A date for that hearing is still pending.