michaelhecht.jpg
Tacoma judge Michael Hecht is accused of paying men for sex.
UPDATE: Hecht has been found guilty. Details after the jump...

A Tacoma judge found

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Tacoma Judge Michael Hecht Denies Soliciting Young Male Prostitutes, Creeps Out Jury

michaelhecht.jpg
Tacoma judge Michael Hecht is accused of paying men for sex.
UPDATE: Hecht has been found guilty. Details after the jump...

A Tacoma judge found himself in an unusual spot yesterday: the witness stand. Michael Hecht took the stand in his own defense to deny charges that he solicited four young men for sex.

Prior to the Judge Hecht came the testimony of Joey Hesketh. Hesketh claims that Hecht first picked him up 10 years ago when he was a 14-year-old prostitute working Tacoma's antique row. He says that when rumors of their relationship began circulating after Hecht's election to superior court, the judge threatened to kill him.

In Hecht's favor is the fact that the accusations against him are coming from people who juries are less likely to trust. Working against him, however, are his own comments. Which are probably meant to sound innocent but come off as really, really creepy.

On the witness stand Monday, Hecht said he's not a sex client but simply a grandfatherly type trying to help people. He says he took one accuser back to his law office after hours to offer friendly advice.
Ahh yes, the old Helpful Grandpa defense. Skeezing out juries since 1922.

Closing arguments in Hecht's case are scheduled for today. We'll let you know how things turn out.

UPDATE: Hecht's lawyer, Wayne Fricke, says that the male prostitutes are just trying to scam the judge out of money.

Fricke also says that the sexual acts Hecht is accused of committing are impossible due to his long term erectile dysfunction.

UPDATE: A jury found Hecht guilty of patronizing a prostitute, felony harassment, and making death threats.

The Tacoma judge still faces charges from the state's Commission on Judicial Conduct. But we're guessing the prison time is of slightly more pressing concern right now.

 
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