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Walt Disney World (WDW) News Discuss Tigger rejects plea in the News & Rumors forums; A man accused of touching a 13-year-old girl's breast while performing in his Tigger costume at Walt Disney World rejected a plea agreement Monday that would have spared him prison ...
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    Tigger rejects plea

    A man accused of touching a 13-year-old girl's breast while performing in his Tigger costume at Walt Disney World rejected a plea agreement Monday that would have spared him prison time.



    Michael Chartrand, 36, rejected an offer of one year of probation and 50 hours of community service if he pleaded to misdemeanor battery. He would also have been banned from theme parks.

    Chartrand now faces up to 15 years in prison if convicted of lewd and lascivious molestation and first-degree misdemeanor battery. His lawyer, Jeffrey Kaufman, did not comment after the decision.

    Chartrand, who has been suspended without pay, was accused of touching the girl while he posed for a picture with her and her mother last February. After his arrest in April, other women filed similar complaints.

    A Disney lawyer has suggested that the orange Tigger costume be dyed and its ears removed if it is introduced as evidence so that Disney can preserve the character's innocent image. Also Monday, the judge agreed to allow 20 pictures of Chartrand, supposedly in costume, posing with Disney World visitors. The prosecutor, William Jay, said the images would help refute likely defense arguments that the touching was accidental.
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  2. #2
    Tampa is offline No longer in service
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    so did he go retroactive yet?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tampa


    so did he go retroactive yet?
    Wow, can't believe you were the first to respond to this thread. It only took 10 months!!!

    P.S. I think he was found not guilty and was given another job at WDW, but wouldn't swear by it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jiminy Cricket
    Wow, can't believe you were the first to respond to this thread. It only took 10 months!!!

    P.S. I think he was found not guilty and was given another job at WDW, but wouldn't swear by it.

    ... now that you mention it, it does make me feel kinda special lol...

    and man, if he's not guilty, they owe that man some backpay!

  5. #5
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    'Tigger' Found Not Guilty Of Molesting Girl

    36-Year-Old Faced Up To 15 Years In Prison



    POSTED: 6:11 p.m. EDT August 4, 2004
    UPDATED: 9:41 p.m. EDT August 6, 2004


    ORLANDO, Fla. -- A Walt Disney World worker who portrayed the character Tigger was found not guilty Wednesday of touching the breast of a 13-year-old girl while posing for a photo at the Magic Kingdom.











    Jurors found 36-year-old Michael Chartrand not guilty of misdemeanor battery and lewd and lascivious molestation, a felony, after deliberating for less than one hour. He had faced 15 years in prison if convicted.



    Chartrand hugged his attorneys when he heard the verdict.



    Slideshow
    PHOTOS
    See Images Presented During Trial -- Attorney Trying On Tigger Costume



    The prosecutor and defense lawyer ended their closing arguments in Michael Chartrand's molestation trial at about 5:15 p.m.

    Defense attorney Jeffrey Kaufman tried on the Tigger costume late Wednesday in an effort to show jurors how difficult it would be to know exactly where a person's hands are when posing for photos.

    Meanwhile, Assistant State Attorney William Jay displayed several photos seized from Chartrand's home showing him posing with theme park visitors.

    Prosecutors claimed 90 percent of the photos contained young girls and several showed his hands in a questionable position that may violate Disney rules.

    One photo showed the 13-year-old victim taken just before or after she claimed she was groped.

    Video
    Attorney Grills Victim's Mother In Tigger Molestation Trial
    Tigger Costume Shown In Court
    Tigger Costume Entered As Evidence; Jurors To Try On Costume
    36-Year-Old Man Accused Of Groping Girl At Magic Kingdom Goes On Trial




    But, Chartrand said he had no way of knowing whether all of the photos showed him or his costumed co-worker. He also said he collected the photos to show his family and supervisors, according to the report.

    Chartrand Denies Touching Girl







    Earlier Wednesday, Chartrand answered "no" when asked if he had ever touched anyone inappropriately while working as a costumed character at the theme park resort.

    Chartrand said he wrote a letter of apology to the girl who he didn't remember, but only at the urging of a detective investigating the case. The detective told him it would make the girl feel better, Chartrand testified.

    "I believe he was trying to get me to admit to something I would never do, fondling or groping a female," Chartrand said of the detective.

    Jurors were also shown dozens of the photos as Jay questioned Chartrand about whether the hands of the characters were placed appropriately on waists, shoulders and rib cages.



    Attorney Grills Victim's Mother



    Chartrand's defense attorney has contended that the girl's mother was merely after money and planned to sue Disney. The mother also claimed Tigger had touched her breast too during the visit to Disney World last February, although no criminal charges were filed on her allegation.





    Wednesday, the mother of the victim described her daughter's condition after the alleged incident and admitted that she planned to file a lawsuit against Disney during testimony in Orange County court.

    "Did you ever discuss suing Disney with the father of the child?" an attorney asked the mother.

    "It came up, yes," she replied.

    "When did it come up?" the attorney asked.

    "I don't know, I talk with him every day," the mother said.

    "Didn't you originally tell me you did not discuss it with him?" the attorney asked.

    "I don't remember," she said. Prosecutors acknowledge that the victim's mother lied to them about a possible lawsuit, Local 6 News reported.







    During Wednesday's testimony, the mother also said her daughter has been embarrassed by the incident.

    The prosecution read an e-mail written by the victim's mother to Walt Disney World in an apparent effort to rebuild her credibility, Local 6 News reported.

    "Tigger had fondled under her arm and kept touching her right breast. She was embarrassed and ashamed and didn't want to tell me at that time. She has been crying a lot and does not want to come back to Disney World or ever see Tigger again," she wrote.

    If convicted, Chartrand could have been sentenced to a maximum of 15 years in prison.

    Earlier this week, he rejected a plea offer that would have given him only probation.

    Watch Local 6 News for more on this story
    Source: Local 6 News--Orlando
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    Thanks JC


    and WOOHOO Tigger!

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