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Former Bulletin publisher changes plea to no contest

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POSTED March 20, 2010 2:58 a.m.
An earlier sexual battery not guilty plea was reduced to a “no contest” stipulation for simple battery against a female employee by former Manteca Bulletin Publisher Paul Mahony, 54, in the Manteca Branch of the San Joaquin County Superior Court Friday morning.

The simple battery status came following a pre-trial conference between Mahony’s attorney and a deputy district attorney. Their agreement was presented to the judge in open court after it convened at 8:30 a.m.  Mahony did not appear for the court session.

Mahony was given three years’ probation, fined $250 and ordered to stay away from a 43-year- employee at the newspaper as part of the plea agreement.  

Several female Bulletin employees had initially complained of inappropriate behavior by the publisher, however the district attorney’s office moved forward with only one count of misdemeanor sexual battery.  Mahony earlier plead not guilty to that charge in Manteca Court March 9.

Charles Hill Morris, regional manager with Morris Multimedia of Savannah, GA, said his firm took immediate action in the interest of employees after learning of those complaints.  Mahony was terminated from his position of some four years with the paper on Feb. 10 following the complaints that included the Feb. 5 incident.

Mahony supervised other papers in the Morris chain including Oakdale, Turlock, Ceres, Ripon, Riverbank and Escalon.
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