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Copyright 2014 The Commercial Appeal, Inc.
The Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Yolanda Jones 901-333-2014

Southaven's parks director has been convicted of groping a woman last year.

Michael Mullins, 66, was found guilty of simple assault Wednesday by Judge Allen Couch during a bench trial in DeSoto County Court.

Mullins was given a 10-day suspended sentence, five months' unsupervised probation and told he cannot have any "intentional contact with the victim," court records state. He must also pay $497.95 in court costs.

This was Mullins' second hearing in the case. Last December, he was also found guilty of the misdemeanor charge by DeSoto County Justice Court Judge Brad Russell.

Mullins appealed the judge's ruling and the matter was moved to county court.

The 49-year-old victim said she had no comment.

The victim worked in a sporting goods store in the city's parks and recreation building on Pine Tar Alley, according to the Southaven police report.

The report was filed by the victim Oct. 21, 2013, 10 days after the incident occurred.

In the report, the victim accused Mullins of touching one of her breasts inappropriately on Oct. 11, 2013.

"The victim stated that she noticed Mullins come into the store and was walking around. After the victim finished with the customer, Mullins approached the victim at the counter area," the report stated. "The victim asked Mullins if they had any part-time work. Mullins asked why. The victim explained things were getting tough for her and her employees. At this time, the victim and Mullins attempted to 'side hug' that two friends would give one another. The victim stated that Mullins grabbed her right breast ... The victim stated she was mad and taken aback by Mullins' action."

She told police in the report that she told her co-worker, her husband and her boss about the incident.

She said Mullins later apologized, but she still e-mailed and spoke with Southaven Mayor Darren Musselwhite about the incident.

The victim then filed charges against Mullins, who was arrested on Oct. 22, 2013. He posted a $1,000 bond and was released.

Neither Mullins nor his attorney, Ben Murphy, could be reached for comment.

City officials said the matter was a personnel issue and by law they could not comment.


August 14, 2014




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