A 41-year-old Fairgrove man extradited to Tuscola County from Florida last week faces up to life in prison in connection with 16 counts of criminal sexual conduct involving underage children.
Sean Michael Hassell is being held in Tuscola County Jail on a $500,000 bond after being arrested in Florida on a tip the Caro Police Department received and ultimately led to his arrest.
All 16 counts are for first degree criminal sexual conduct, a charge that carries a sentence of up to life in prison. Mark Reene, prosecutor, Tuscola County, said Hassell’s address is Fairgrove but he also has ties to Caro, which is why the tip of where he was located was passed along to the Caro Police Department.
“He had actually been in other states with the victims,” Reene said. “They had been in Indiana, Colorado, Louisiana – they’d only been in our county about two months.
“We have reason to believe other acts were committed outside the state of Michigan, as well.”
Reene said “the day this information came to light, he fled the state of Michigan immediately.”
He attributed to the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services and Caro Police Department with working together to track down Hassell’s whereabouts prior to his arrest.
The Tuscola County Child Advocacy Center also was involved in the investigation, he said.
Reene said Hassell was apprehended by police in Florida and extradited to Michigan last week.
A preliminary exam is set for Oct. 17.
Andrew Dietderich is editor of The Advertiser and can be reached at email@example.com