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Gatten waives prelim hearing, reproduce charge dropped

Charles Greer Gatten, of Franklin, chose to waive his preliminary hearing Aug. 16 in connection to several charges related to child pornography, and the prosecution amended four of the six charges and dropped one, alleging possession of materials but no longer alleging reproduction of them.

Charles Greer Gatten

Gatten, now 67, was arrested at his home in the 200 block of Meadow Lane on Nov. 13 on three counts of possession of child pornography and three counts of the distribution of child pornography.

Online case information shows only five charges associated with Gatten’s upcoming Sept. 20 hearing in Southampton Circuit Court, and none of them on the website refer to reproduction or distribution of child pornography.

The reproduction charge listed in association with the Aug. 16 hearing in Franklin City General District Court on the online system now has the disposition of nolle prosequi, which is a term that refers to formal notice of abandonment by a plaintiff or prosecutor of all or part of a suit or action.

Of the five remaining charges, one is listed in the online system as a Class 6 felony possession charge, and the other four are listed as Class 5 felony possession second-offense charges.

At a preliminary hearing, a prosecutor must convince a judge that probable cause exists for the case to move forward.

When a preliminary hearing is not waived, witnesses are able to be called to testify and are able to be cross examined.

The next court date listed in the online system for Gatten’s case is Sept. 20 at 9:30 a.m. in Southampton Circuit Court. This is term day, the day on which the grand jury convenes and a trial date can be selected.