Former Warsaw Police Officer Tim Whitright appeared in Kosciusko Superior Court I today and accepted a plea based on allegations he molested a 14-year-old girl.
Whitright, dressed in a sport coat, dress pants and tie, told Judge Duane Huffer he understood that he is waiving his right to a jury trial by accepting an amended plea to his original charges of child molestation, a class C felony; and child solicitation, a class D felony. Whitright withdrew his not guilty plea to those charges and instead pleaded guilty to a class D felony charge of sexual battery.
If the court accepts the plea, Whitright would be required to register as a sex offender for a period of 10 years. He could also face 6 months to 3 years imprisonment and fines up to $3,000.
Whitright resigned as a police officer after allegations that he inappropriately touched a 14-year-old girl in November 2010 were revealed in late 2011. Those allegations stemmed from another incident in which the then police officer admitted to kissing a 16-year-old girl whom he had met while working a security duty at Warsaw Community High School. No charges were ever filed in that matter as 16 is the legal age of consent in Indiana.
After today’s hearing, Kosciusko County Prosecutor Dan Hampton said the victim’s family were instrumental in the case and are “satisfied with the plea terms. No one is ever happy in a case like this.”
Hampton also said Whitright will never work as a police officer again and cannot work in a public service that would require him to carry a gun. With a felony on his permanent record, he will not be permitted to own a gun.
The court has taken the plea agreement into advisement and will reconvene at 8:30 a.m. Wednesday, May 23. If the court accepts the plea, Whitright will also be sentenced that day.