Gary E. Coats (right) stands with attorney Dillon Staas Wednesday morning in Van Wert County Court of Common Pleas. Coats was indicted on three counts of sexual battery and two counts of unlawful sexual conduct with a minor. (Times Bulletin/Ed Gebert)
Gary E. Coats (right) stands with attorney Dillon Staas Wednesday morning in Van Wert County Court of Common Pleas. Coats was indicted on three counts of sexual battery and two counts of unlawful sexual conduct with a minor. (Times Bulletin/Ed Gebert)

BY ED GEBERT

Times Bulletin News Writer

egebert@timesbulletin.com

A former Ohio City man could face up to 39 years in prison if found guilty of six counts filed against him.

Gary E. Coats, 29, Coldwater, pleaded not guilty to three counts of second-degree felony sexual battery and three counts of third-degree felony unlawful sexual conduct with a minor.

Two of the counts stem from incidents between Dec. 1, 2009 and Jan. 31, 2010, while the other four counts are from actions on June 4 and 5. The incidents deal with a person between 13-16 years of age and for whom Coats was reportedly functioning as a parent.

Magistrate Joseph E. Quatman ordered Coats held in the Van Wert County Correctional Facility on a $100,000 cash bond. A pretrial hearing is scheduled for July 21 in the case.

Eleven others were also arraigned in Van Wert County Court of Common Pleas Wednesday morning.

Michael M. Whisman, 19, Van Wert, entered not guilty pleas to a pair of burglary counts, each felonies of the second degree. Whisman was ordered held on a $10,000 cash bond with a pretrial set for July 21.

A Convoy man was arraigned on eight felony counts against him. Dustyn Taylor, 19, pleaded not guilty to two counts of possession of drugs and six counts of forgery, all felonies of the fifth degree. Taylor was released on bond and ordered to attend a pretrial conference on July 21.

Robert E. Thompson, 26, Van Wert, pleaded not guilty to fourth-degree felony burglary. Thompson was released on bond. A pretrial hearing is scheduled for July 21.

Kelli Jo Knapke, 49, Van Wert, was arraigned on a charge of burglary, a felony of the fourth degree. She entered a not guilty plea. The prosecution requested that Knapke be held on a cash bond since she had harassed the victim since the last court hearing.

Quatman ordered Knapke held on a $5,000 cash bond. A pretrial will be set at a later date, with the case to be assigned a visiting judge.

Phillip Hartman, 22, Van Wert, pleaded not guilty to fourth-degree felony assault. His attorney indicated that he planned to enter a plea of not guilty by reason of insanity at a later date. Hartman was ordered held on a $50,000 cash bond with ten percent privilege. A pretrial conference has been scheduled for July 21.

Klarisa A. Mendoza, 23, Van Wert, entered a not guilty plea to a fifth-degree felony count of violating a protection order. Quatman ordered Mendoza held on a $10,000 cash bond with ten percent privilege. A pretrial conference has been scheduled for July 28.

Moses Wilder, 27, Van Wert, pleaded not guilty to domestic violence, a felony of the third degree. Wilder was released on bond with the stipulation that he have no contact with the victim. A pretrial conference was scheduled for July 28th.

Amanda Collins, 27, Van Wert, entered a not guilty plea to theft, a felony of the fifth degree. Collins was released on bond with a pretrial hearing set for July 28.

Amy McNabb, 37, Paulding, pleaded not guilty to possession of drugs, a felony of the fifth degree. McNabb was released on bond with a pretrial hearing scheduled for July 28.

A Middle Point man pleaded not guilty to fourth-degree felony domestic violence. William Osborne, 35, was released on bond and ordered to have no contact with the victim in this case. A pretrial hearing has been scheduled for July 28.

Shane Williams, 23, Van Wert, entered a not guilty plea to fourth-degree felony domestic violence. Williams was released but continues on electronically-monitored house arrest. He will appear at a pretrial conference on July 28.