CORUNNA — An Owosso man rejected a plea offer from prosecutors at a hearing Thursday morning in 35th Circuit Court, and will instead take his case to trial on charges of first-degree criminal sexual conduct and assault with intent to do great bodily harm less than murder.
Craig Pakosz, 43, will face a jury trial on both felony counts; the trial is schedued to begin Jan. 21 in circuit court.
Prosecutors offered a plea deal that would have seen Pakosz agree to plead guilty to one reduced count of assault by strangulation, and the CSC and assault charges would have been dismissed. Assistant Prosecutor Scott Koerner said Thursday that sentencing guidelines were estimated at one year, seven months to three years, two months, though the court was not obligated to stay within that term of incarceration.
At Thursday’s hearing, Judge Matthew Stewart asked Pakosz if he understood that if he is convicted by a jury to the CSC and assault charges, the potential prison term could be substantially longer than the plea agreement offered by prosecutors.
“If, after trial, the jury convicts you,” Stewart said, “those counts and those sentences could run consecutively. You understand?”
“Yes, sir,” Pakosz replied. Stewart then told Koerner and defense attorney Adam Pfeiffer that he would schedule the case for trial.
Pakosz was originally charged by prosecutors after an investigation by Corunna Police for an incident that allegedly occurred Aug. 1, 2019. He was arraigned on the felony counts Aug. 2, 2019, before 66th District Court Judge Ward Clarkson; Pakosz pleaded not guilty. Court records do not indicate the amount his bond was set at, but Pakosz has been lodged at the Shiawassee County Jail since his arrest. He was bound over to circuit court on the charges Oct. 30, 2019.
Pakosz has misdemeanor convictions for OWI in 2015 and 2018, drunk and disorderly in 2017 and 2019, trespassing in 2017, and assault and battery in 2017 that was reduced from a domestic violence, as well as several minor traffic-related citations.