Hahn cops plea to lesser charge

Aaron Michael Hahn entered an "Alford plea" to one count of sexual exploitation of a minor on July 20 in Clallam County Superior Court as part of an agreement with prosecutors.

The plea means he doesn't admit guilt but concedes the state likely could prove the charge beyond a reasonable doubt if the case went to trial.

Sentencing is set for Sept. 3. Prosecutors are recommending 36 months in

prison with credit for time served, three to four years probation and $2,150 in fines and court costs. Hahn also must register as a sex offender for 10 years.

Nine other charges were dropped as part of the

agreement, including four counts of child rape, one count of possessing depictions of minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct and one count of stalking - domestic violence.

Hahn still faces a four-day trial beginning Aug. 24 on one count of solicitation of murder.

He allegedly tried to hire a fellow inmate to kill a teenage Sequim girl with whom he had the relationship.

Hahn is being held in Clallam County Jail on $1 million bail on that charge, a class A felony that carries a penalty of up to life in prison.

According to court records, Hahn refused to plead guilty to the sexual exploitation of a minor charge but agreed to accept the state's offer of an Alford plea.

The Alford plea of guilty can be considered in future trials and counts toward the state's "three strikes" law.

The difference versus a standard guilty plea is that if the victim later recants, the defendant can withdraw the Alford plea.

Reach Brian Gawley at

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