.....the alleged sexual penetration occurred in February and March.
Accused ex-cop says charges ‘are without merit’
By Norb Franz
Posted: Friday, 04/12/13 01:15 pm
Updated: Friday, 04/12/13 09:33 pm
A former Warren police officer, who spent years working in schools, was charged Friday with sexually molesting a 16-year-old girl.
Dale Wayne Malesh, 62, of Roseville, was arraigned on two counts of 3rd-degree criminal sexual conduct — a felony punishable by up to 15 years in prison. Malesh, arrested hours earlier outside his home on Loreto Street, asked 37th District Judge Dean Ausilio to release him on a personal recognizance bond and promised he would show up for future court hearings.
“Although the accusations are without merit, I have no intention of leaving,” said Malesh via video from the Warren Police Department lockup, adding he had plans to move to Florida. “I am not a flight risk. I can assure your honor (of that). Although the allegations against me are serious, I have no problem staying here and preparing my defense with my attorney.”
In urging the judge to set a high bond, Macomb County Assistant Prosecutor Nicole Blank said law enforcement officials were concerned Malesh might attempt suicide.
“I am not a suicide risk. I am too narcissistic for that,” Malesh said.
Judge Ausilio ordered Malesh held in lieu of $150,000 cash or surety bond. The judge told the former police officer that if he manages to post bail, he must wear a tether, cannot leave Macomb County and must surrender his passport and enhanced driver license. Malesh also was ordered to have no contact with anyone under age 18.
The teenage girl, accompanied by friends in the court, cried as she left the courtroom. She later told The Macomb Daily that the accusations are “overblown.”
“The charges are ridiculous,” said the teen, whose name is not being published by the newspaper. She said her alleged relationship with Malesh was “completely consensual.”
According to court records, the alleged sexual penetration occurred in February and March. The teen turned age 16 — the age of consent under Michigan law — last August. However, prosecutors are basing the 15-year felony on state law that prohibits anyone from using their status to gain access to, or establish a relationship with, a student between 16 and 18 years of age.
Malesh spent the past 19 years of his law enforcement career as a Warren police officer, including the last 11 as a school resource officer. Prior to retirement, he worked as an officer at Warren Woods Tower High School. After he left the police force, Warren Woods Public Schools officials hired him as a contractual security worker.
Warren Woods Superintendent Stacey Denewith-Fici did not immediately return phone calls seeking comment Friday.
Warren police, including Special Operations officers carrying semiautomatic rifles, converged on Malesh’s home in the area of Common and Hayes roads, at approximately 11:20 a.m. Friday. He emerged in front a short time later, raised his hands above his head and was handcuffed without a struggle. Moments later, another man was briefly handcuffed as detectives began searching the two-story house.
Investigators spent approximately two hours inside the house. One detective carried out a large box.
Warren Police Commissioner Jere Green said the arrest culminated a 3-week investigation in which police seized several cellphones, including phones belonging to Malesh and the 16-year-old girl.
“A lot of the investigation involved text messages and Tweets and Facebook,” Green said. The Macomb Area Computer Enforcement team assisted with that part of the investigation, he said.
Green said Malesh was interviewed by police on March 29. The city’s top-ranking police administrator called the alleged actions by one of his former officers “disappointing.”
“You would still expect a high level of behavior you’d expect from current employees,” Green said. “Based on the evidence that I reviewed, the evidence that’s been presented to date is disturbing.”
The police commissioner said additional evidence will be turned over to Roseville police for further investigation.
Malesh is scheduled to return to Warren’s district court for a preliminary hearing on April 25.
On LinkedIn, Malesh said he is a training officer for St. John Health and president of Protection Professionals Inc., providing security for schools and health care facilities. He also is president of Malesh Associates Inc., offering security training.
Prior to his retirement in Warren, he conducted a firearms training class for members of Warren’s Citizen Emergency Response Team. He also heads A2 Guns and Gear, which holds classes to help handgun owners obtain a concealed pistol permit.