LIMA — A sentencing hearing for a Toledo man charged with variety of sex-related offenses was postponed at the 11th hour Thursday — much the way his jury trial had been one month earlier — after the defendant told the court of unspecified “additional information” that has recently come to light.
Derrick Martre, 27, of Toledo, through his court-appointed attorney Joe Benavidez, told Allen County Common Pleas Court Judge David Cheney of correspondence he received recently that resulted in his desire to withdraw his guilty pleas in the case.
Martre accepted a deal from prosecutors last month, just minutes before jury selection was set to begin in his trial. He agreed to enter pleas of no contest to two counts of gross sexual imposition and two counts of pandering sexually-oriented material involving a minor, all third-degree felonies, and one count of the illegal use of a minor in nudity-oriented material, a felony of the second degree.
In exchange for his plea, prosecutors dismissed a first-degree felony charge of aggravated burglary.
According to court records, police say that on or about May 20 of last year Martre was discovered to have made videos with his cell phone of himself touching two young girls, aged 9 and 6. The incident is alleged to have taken place at a residence in the 400 block of South Metcalf Street in Lima.
Toledo police were alerted after Martre’s girlfriend reportedly found the images on the suspect’s cell phone. A warrant was obtained that allowed police to further search Martre’s phone and the videos of the suspect reportedly fondling the young girls were taken into evidence.
At Thursday’s sentencing hearing, Cheney ordered a transcript of the May plea-change hearing be prepared and distributed to all parties. The judge gave Benavidez eight days to file a motion with the court outlining the grounds on which he will argue that Martre’s withdrawal of his previous pleas should be accepted by the court.