BANGOR – A Millinocket man who has a previous conviction for unlawful sexual contact involving a University of Maine student was deemed not guilty Thursday by a jury for another sexual crime.
Hollis Hafford, 70, was charged in August with engaging a prostitute after police say he propositioned males walking around Bangor.
“He pulled up to me on the side of the road and offered to give me sexual favors for weed. I said, ‘No,’” Thomas Richards, of Dexter, said on the steps of the Penobscot Judicial Center after he testified.
He added, “I called the Bangor Police Department and the Bangor Police Department pulled him over within 10 minutes. Three other phone calls had come in before I called.”
Bangor police Officer George Spencer said two of the other calls came from transients who were not available to testify.
Richards took the stand as did Hafford.
“He’s maintained all along that he did not do that,” said Hunter Tzovarras, who represented Hafford. “He testified today that he did not and the jury returned a not guilty verdict.”
Richards said, “He lied through his teeth.”
Before the verdict was known, Richards said, he reported the crime in order to protect others.
“I hope that … justice is served and that he gets off the streets and that I saved some other kid’s life,” he said.
Hafford was convicted in 2001 for touching a young male UMaine student, according to Alice Clifford, an assistant district attorney who prosecuted the case. He was sentenced to 60 days in jail, with all the time suspended, she said.
“The state is disappointed with the jury’s verdict,” said Christy Stilphen, an assistant district attorney for Penobscot County who prosecuted the case. “We do respect the jury’s decision, and we will still continue to prosecute these cases in the future.”
“My clients very pleased with the outcome,” Tzovarras said. “He’s been waiting approximately six months to have his day in court and is satisfied with the outcome, of course.”