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Ogdensburg man pleads guilty to attempted sexual abuse count

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CANTON- An Ogdensburg man accused of sexually abusing a 7-year-old girl in July was sent back to St. Lawrence County jail without bail after pleading guilty to a reduced count in St. Lawrence County Court.

Joshua A. Petell, 25, of 4 Mill St., Apt. A, pleaded guilty to first-degree attempted sexual abuse in a plea bargain agreement that calls for him to be sentenced to no worse than a split sentence of six months in county jail and probation. He was represented by attorney Mary E. Rain.

He had been indicted for felony first-degree sexual abuse. Petell was accused of inappropriately touching a 7-year-old girl July 22 in the city of Ogdensburg.

“I was drawing tattoos on her leg, and my left hand touched her vaginal area,” Petell said during the arraignment, admitting the sexual contract was made for his own sexual gratification. St. Lawrence County Court Judge Jerome J. Richards directed the probation department to conduct a pre-sentence investigation and scheduled sentencing for Dec. 10.

Ms. Rain asked the court to release Petell from custody and place him under probation supervision. She said he had been incarcerated for a little over 70 days and if he remained at the jail until sentencing he would be past the maximum promised sentenced with his good time benefits. A defendant serving a 180-day jail sentence is eligible for release with good time credit after serving 120 days.

County Assistant District Attorney Jonathan L. Becker urged the court to send Petell back to the county jail with bail continued at $10,000, suggesting there had been no substantial changes to merit his release from jail.

Ms. Rain said her client is receiving counseling.

“The substantial change in his circumstances is he has pleaded guilty. He has lived here all of his life,” Ms. Rain said.

In other recent county court action before Judge Richards:

Nadine M. Montroy, 43, of 331 Judson St., Ogdensburg, pleaded guilty to a single count of second-degree criminal possession of a forged instrument in a plea bargain agreement that satisfied three other forged instrument counts pending in Ogdensburg City Court as well as uncharged cases involving 13 other forged checks.

Ms. Montroy admitted she had forged and cashed a check belonging to her cousin, Nancy David, on March 1 in the city. Prosecutors said restitution on all the charges covered by the plea is expected to be in the $1,900 range.

The Ogdensburg woman was sent back to the county jail, but Judge Richards said he would release her when a bed becomes available in an in-patient treatment center.

He directed the probation department to conduct a pre-sentence investigation and tentatively scheduled sentencing for Dec. 10.

Matthew Adams, 28, of 62 Benson Mines Road, Star Lake, pleaded not guilty tor two counts of felony second-degree burglary, second-degree robbery and misdemeanor endangering the welfare of a child. He is represented by Public Defender Stephen D. Button.

Mr. Adams allegedly entered the town of Fine residence of Dean Williams with the intent to commit a crime Sept. 1. He left, then entered the residence of Ina and Michael Ober, also in the town of Fine, where he allegedly stole property and injured Ms. Ober.

The alleged burglary and robbery occurred in front of Ms. Ober’s 14-year-old granddaughter, leading to the endangering the welfare of a child charge.

Amber Lottie, 23, of 3095 County Route 17, DeKalb Junction, pleaded not guilty to two counts of felony third-degree criminal sale of a controlled substance and one count of felony fourth-degree criminal sale of a controlled substance. Her release under probation was continued.

She is represented by Mr. Button.

Ms. Lottie is accused of selling oxycodone twice on Nov. 22 and methadone on March 2 in the town of Hermon.

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