GREENFIELD — A registered sex offender caught playing Pokemon Go with a 16-year-old boy on the courthouse lawn, just a few feet from the county probation office, will serve about three years in prison, a judge decided Wednesday.
Randy Zuick, 42, of Greenfield, was sentenced to serve his time in an Indiana Department of Correction facility, admitting he violated the terms of a deal he accepted from prosecutors about three months ago when he pleaded guilty in a child molest case.
Last month, Zuick was rearrested after probation officers recognized him outside their office, playing the popular smartphone game near a boy on the courthouse lawn. In April, Zuick had pleaded guilty to a Level 4 felony charge of child molesting for fondling a child younger than 14 and was on sex-offender probation, which prohibited him from spending time with children, court records show.
The county courthouse — where the probation department is housed — is one of dozens of local sites highlighted in Pokemon Go and has been drawing players to the area since the game’s release last month.
Nick Layman, a probation officer, recognized Zuick when he saw him in front of the courthouse and called Zuick’s probation officer, May Kay Dobbs.
The two alerted a court security officer, who arrested Zuick and booked him into the Hancock County Jail.
On Wednesday, Zuick appeared before Hancock Circuit Court Judge Richard Culver for a hearing.
Zuick told the court he knew he was violating the terms of his probation — which forbid him from having any contact with children and from using the internet.
He knew he shouldn’t have been there in the first place, he told the court before asking the judge to sentence him to work release.
Dobbs testified she met with Zuick multiple times before his arrest in July to review what was expected of him, and he should have known he wasn’t allowed to interact with children.
The two also discussed the terms restricting his access the internet, even on his cellphone, she said. Zuick was caught once before using the internet, and the probation office chose not to pursue a violation charge, she added.
Zuick requested to serve his time on work-release, but Culver said the defendant couldn’t be trusted in a program allowing that kind of leniency.