Case dropped against man with HIV accused of failing to inform sex partner
Felony charges have been dismissed against a parolee accused of having sex with a Kalamazoo woman last year and failing to inform her that he was HIV-positive, prosecutors said.
The Kalamazoo County Prosecutor’s Office dismissed the case Tuesday, the same day X, 46, was scheduled to stand trial on one count of having sex with an uninformed partner, Chief Assistant Prosecutor Carrie Klein said.
Klein said the case was dismissed after the alleged victim in the case informed prosecutors that she did not want to testify in open court about her exposure to HIV, allegedly by way of X.
Klein said the case against X has been dismissed without prejudice, meaning that prosecutors could retry the case in the future.
At a probable cause hearing in January the woman testified by phone that after she met X in 2014 they became friends and on two occasions during the summer of that year they had sex at her home.
The woman testified she confronted X in September after a friend spotted X outside the woman’s home and warned her that X had done time in prison for failing to inform a sex partner that he was HIV-positive.
According to Michigan Department of Corrections records, X was paroled from prison in July 2013 after serving more than four years for having sex with a woman in Calhoun County and failing to inform her he was HIV-positive.
At the probable cause hearing in January, X’ attorney, Andis Svikis, challenged the woman and asked her if she ever told a roommate that she and X never had sex. He also asked the woman if she was testifying because she had been promised by prosecutors that a good word would be put in for her regarding time she was serving then in a federal penitentiary.
Svikis also asked the woman in January if her reporting X to Kalamazoo police stemmed from her seeking revenge over a bad drug deal.
The woman answered no to each of Svikis’ inquiries during the hearing.
Michigan man re-sentenced following appeal
A Michigan man, previously sentenced to a prison term lasting five to 15 years after pleading no contest to two charges of criminal HIV exposure in early 2007, has been re-sentenced by the same judge to four to 15 years in prison following an appeal.
Russell Willis, 40, had appealed the original sentence arguing that he had made a plea agreement for a minimum of two years in prison. But Judge James Kingsley gave him a harsher sentence because Willis, out on bail at the time, did not appear for his sentencing hearing.
The Michigal Court of Appeals ruled that the sentencing agreement could not be changed just because Willis did not appear, but the new sentence is still double the agreement.
According to The Battle Creek Enquirer:
The case stemmed from sexual acts with two women, one in 2004 and the other in 2006. They both told Battle Creek police Willis did not tell them he had HIV, or human immunodeficiency virus, which can lead to AIDS. Willis knew he had the virus and had been told by the Kalamazoo County Health Department he was required by law to notify sexual partners, police and prosecutors said. Willis contends he told the women.
“Callous disregard earned you a prison sentence,” Calhoun County Circuit Court Judge James Kingsley said. “You deceived and took advantage of women, knowing you are diseased.”
The case and original sentencing had previously been reported on the website of local TV news channel, WWMT. Both women are now HIV-positive, but Michigan’s laws have a low proof theshold and do not have to prove that Mr Willis was the source of their infection, only that he did not disclose his HIV status before having unprotected sex with them.