BRISTOL – A city man convicted in October of sexually assaulting another man while the two were in a local psychiatric unit has admitted to violating his probation.
James Mulhern, 42, of 218 West St., accepted a plea bargain on Friday, during a hearing in Bristol Superior Court. The deal exposes him to as many as 30 months in prison if he’s unsuccessful in an inpatient, rehabilitation program. The program is expected to last several months.
If Mulhern does well in treatment, he would avoid further prison time and be ordered to complete his probationary period.
Mulhern on Oct. 26 was sentenced to two years of probation after pleading guilty to charges of third-degree assault, second-degree breach of peace and first-degree reckless endangerment. The reckless endangerment charge was pursued in lieu of one count of fourth-degree sexual assault, while the other two charges were in connection with an unrelated incident in which he punched a woman.
According to the arrest warrant, Mulhern missed his first probation appointment on Oct. 31 and a subsequent appointment the next day. He was then sent a letter notifying him he needed to come to an appointment on Nov. 13, the warrant said. He did not show up.
On Nov. 15, Mulhern’s probation officer went to the home where he said he resided. She was told by neighbors that Mulhern had been evicted. According to the warrant, Mulhern was required to notify his supervising officer if he moved.
According to the court papers, Mulhern is on probation after touching a man’s buttocks over his clothes on April 1, 2018, at Bristol Hospital. The 22-year-old sexual assault victim told police that Mulhern was his roommate for three days before the incident happened in the early morning hours. He said he fell asleep on his stomach before he felt someone touching his buttocks, near his rectum, court paper said.
Justin Muszynski can be reached at 860-973-1809 or firstname.lastname@example.org.