Ex-Havre de Grace councilman receives 15-year prison term for molesting boy

December 10, 1997|By Lisa Respers | Lisa Respers,SUN STAFF

A former Havre de Grace councilman was sentenced to 15 years in prison yesterday for molesting a youth almost 20 years ago.

Charles A. Maslin III was found guilty last month of two counts of second-degree sexual offense, one count of third-degree sexual offense and one count of child abuse for molesting James C. Waters between 1978 and 1982, starting when Waters was 9.

Maslin, 40, who was elected to office in May 1996, sent a letter of resignation to the City Council last week and a replacement is expected to be named Monday, city officials said.

In Harford County Circuit Court yesterday, Waters, 28, read a victim-impact statement describing how the abuse led him to drug use and a suicide attempt.

"I'm sorry it took 20 years and the loss of my youth and innocence for me to come forward," Waters said as he looked at Maslin. "Are you?"

Maslin sobbed loudly as his mother and fiancee read statements asking Judge Thomas E. Marshall to spare him jail time.

Maslin apologized to Waters and tearfully told the judge that he had been molested as a boarding school student. He also said he had slipped into alcohol abuse, but has been rehabilitated.

"A man cannot change his past, but he can change his present," Maslin said. "I am not the person I used to be."

Marshall sentenced Maslin to 40 years in prison, with several counts to run concurrently during 15 years. Under Maryland law, Maslin must serve about half that before he is eligible for parole.

After the sentencing, Waters said he was disappointed that Maslin did not receive a longer sentence, but said he was glad he went public with the abuse.

"I turned my feelings inward and hurt mostly myself, so why did he have to hurt other people?" said Waters, who has a civil suit pending against Maslin. "He took from me my childhood."

Pub Date: 12/10/97

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