Rev. Kuhn Jailed 30 Days for Violating Terms of Probation

By Rob Modic
Dayton Daily News
February 11, 2005

Dayton — Rev. Thomas Kuhn, convicted of public indecency in July, was jailed for 30 days Thursday night after a judge found he violated terms of his probation for public indecency and other misdemeanors for providing alcohol to underage students.

Among other terms, Kuhn was barred from offering his services to any agency that served people younger than age 21.

Kuhn testified he offered his counseling services to the principal of a Cincinnati Catholic high school Sept. 27, the day after one of the students had been fatally shot. But he insisted he did not want to be involved with the students.

Montgomery County Common Pleas Judge Mary Katherine Huffman said she did not believe Kuhn's explanation and found he violated the condition she set in July.

"I don't know why you don't believe me, and I'm sorry that this happened," Kuhn said, insisting he was not seeking contact with students at the high school.

Kuhn claimed he called Elder High School the morning of Sept. 27, and learned no students at the all-male school were present because of a scheduled teacher-training day. He said he visited the school, where he had been principal in the 1980s, looking for principal Tom Otten, a former co-worker and subordinate, with the intent to offer personal grief counseling if Otten requested it.

Otten's son-in-law, Douglas Guenther, the school's business manager, testified he told Kuhn to leave, and that Kuhn left immediately. Kuhn later left a phone message for Otten, offering his services. The message, Huffman found, violated her condition.

Kuhn's attorney, Dwight Brannon, said he would seek an appeal bond or stay of Huffman's order Friday morning before the state court of appeals.

Huffman, who could have imposed 18 months in prison, made the 30-day jail term an additional condition for him to continue under court supervision of community control for up to five years.

Huffman also reinstated her orders of December that Kuhn not go within 1,000 feet of any school or day-care center and that he submit to screening at an Atlanta behavioral institute. Kuhn's attorney said it is a center that specializes in treatments for sex offenders and sex addiction.

She did not address Kuhn's motion to withdraw his pleas of no contest made June 23, which led to his convictions. She said Kuhn fully understood the terms she set.

"I left no gray area about what was expected," Huffman said. "To suggest there was no harm is not the issue."


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