Man on probation for groping hospital patient is accused of having sex with underage girl
A man who absconded from probation after being convicted last fall of groping a patient at C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital in Ann Arbor, was charged this week with having sex with an underage girl.
Soumo Gorden Kennedy, 18, who is homeless and remains at large, faces three counts of third-degree criminal sexual conduct involving a victim age 13 to 15.
Washtenaw County sheriff's deputies said Kennedy is accused of having sex with a 15-year-old girl he was dating between June 1 and November 15 at a home near Mary Catherine Street and Jeff Avenue in Ypsilanti Township. Kennedy was 17 for much of that time. In Michigan, the legal age of consent is 16.
Investigators have been seeking Kennedy since Dec. 2 when a bench warrant was issued after he failed to check in with a probation officer in Washtenaw County.
The warrant was issued two-and-a-half weeks after Washtenaw County Circuit Judge Melinda Morris sentenced Kennedy to 6 months in jail and five years probation for groping a female patient at 9:40 p.m. Aug. 20 while she was hospitalized with broken bones.
Morris agreed to let Kennedy start serving his jail term on weekends. She gave him an opportunity to show he could land a job or become a full-time student and she said she would consider shortening his jail term. Under the agreement, Kennedy was required to abide by the conditions of probation.
However, court records say Kennedy did not check in with a probation officer after being released from jail on Nov. 21.
In addition to being convicted last fall of fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct involving force or coercion, Kennedy was convicted of third-degree home invasion in 2008 in Wayne County.
Each count of third-degree criminal sexual conduct is punishable upon conviction by up to 15 years in prison.
Lee Higgins covers crime and courts for AnnArbor.com. He can be reached by phone at (734) 623-2527 and email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 9:29 p.m.
I hope this kid can get on the right track. Being homeless at his age can start hardening his heart, if it hasn't already.
Fri, Feb 10, 2012 : 2:52 a.m.
Save your crocodile tears for someone who deserves them.
Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 9:24 p.m.
For James Socrates you missed the facts of Kennedy was convicted of third-degree home invasion in 2008 in Wayne County. And where did your facts of him "cooperating with the prosecutors office" come from. Mr. Kennedy attacked a helpless patient in the hospital that he didn't even know her name. And you think they should just walk the streets. May you and the judge should get together and go over sentencing strategies. You are both way out of touch
Le Le Reed
Wed, Feb 15, 2012 : 10:13 p.m.
I feel what both of you are saying, but anotherUofM u are out of sync..... y do I say this? What does home invasion have to do with sexually related crimes? Judge Morris is doing the right thing. She had hoped things would work out for him, but apparently he knew this other charge was coming out so he chose not to report to probation. This was a case that hadn't come to light yet. I am NOT making excuses or covering up the real problems that we have in society today...I am merely shining some light on things that the "normal" person will never see w/out the help of someone else. Most crimes that are committed come from someone that has a "problem". Some crimes, such as murder, are isolated incidents. But the basis of other crimes come from someone who has issues. People don't commit crimes just because!!! You want to lock them up so they can be "rehabilitated" and locking them up for years only makes them better criminals! You are rehabilitated in your mind...that's not something someone else can do for you. When they are released they have no where to go and no one to depend on....where does that lead them? Right back to committing crime! Instead of blaming the judges, lawyers and the families of these wrong doers....you should take your comments and "big concern" to find ways to help these people... Helping others to heal is the only way to protect our homes, families and communities.
Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 7:33 p.m.
As a person who has very conservative view on crime and punishment, I just cannot agree with the comments. Judge Morris believes that to simply throw young people in jail is irresponsible. Quite frankly it is. Here is a young man who had committed a fairly minor sexual offense (and I use the term minor with discression) who had no criminal history, who had cooperated with the prosecutors office, and who throwing in jail would simply waste resources and prevent him from reentering as a productive member of society. She gave him the option to better himself and stay out of trouble and he threw it in her face and is now on the run. I do not think it says anything about the judge other then she does not want to see people like this grow up to be serial offenders or criminals criminals. I like to think that for every one of "these" there are ten who have used their second chances well. I prefer to blame the criminal, not the judge.
Fri, Feb 10, 2012 : 1:35 a.m.
To address the comment, If I recall this case never went to trial which means that the defendant cooperated enough with the prosecution to a 4th degree sexual assault charge with the other charges dropped. Its should be noted that as there have just been charges filed for an event that occurred between June and November of last year, this was before his pleading and sentencing for the first sexual assualt charge. THis is not"ex post facto" its priori facto, before sentencing. Keep in mind this latest even happended before the sexual assault at the hospital, but the charges were not filed until now. Its clear that this kid has some issues but there is a big difference between a 15 and 17 year old having consensual relations even if illegal, and a person forcibly coercing someone. I do pity this person. His life is over. He will be a burden on society for the rest of his life. 17 and what future? Its too bad, just too bad.
Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 9:21 p.m.
Kennedy was convicted of third-degree home invasion in 2008 in Wayne County. And where did your facts of him "cooperating with the prosecutors office" come from.
Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 3:01 p.m.
People, please educate yourself about the ballot, a lot of you are misinformed. Judge Melinda Morris is retiring at the end of 2012. Now, do your due diligence and exercise your mind about the candidates replacing her before you exercise your right to vote.
Fri, Feb 10, 2012 : 3:10 a.m.
I agree,but most people don't . That's why the political system is so screwed up!
Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 1:47 p.m.
"Morris agreed to let Kennedy start serving his jail term on weekends. She gave him an opportunity to show he could land a job or become a full-time student and she said she would consider shortening his jail term. Under the agreement, Kennedy was required to abide by the conditions of probation. However, court records say Kennedy did not check in with a probation officer after being released from jail on Nov. 21." Yet another example of "Morris justice" in Washtenaw county leading to more crimes. When, oh when, will we be rid of this Judge who just doesn't get it????? These perps need real consequences for their actions, and Morris' slap on the wrist sentences just help these career criminals in pursuing their careers!
Fri, Feb 10, 2012 : 2:50 a.m.
So the community is safe 2/7 of the time.
Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 12:25 p.m.
He's now 18 years old. He was given a great opportunity and chose not to appreciate that option. There should be no more leniancy for him.
Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 2:10 a.m.
Whether he is homeless or not, put him in jail where he belongs. When one doesn't abide by the requirements of probation, and Morris did give him another chance to right himself. He chose to break the rules, so I don't blame anyone but him.
Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 1:48 a.m.
The Kennedy Clan has had a problem with sex ever since I can remember. JFK, RFK, Old Joe, JFK, jr. .... it runs in the family.
Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 1:58 a.m.
Don't forget William!
Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 1:14 a.m.
This guy needs to be locked up before he screws us all.
Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 12:46 a.m.
Sympathy for the devil has no place in modern justice. Early retirement is in order.
Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 12:38 a.m.
I also think he should move in with Judge Morris and her family...her sympaathy forthe accused is well known...Can't wait for Jim Fink to bring a "law and order" attitude to the bench here.
Wed, Feb 8, 2012 : 11:47 p.m.
he is on the run hope he is caught soon and put him in jail where he belongs
The Black Stallion3
Wed, Feb 8, 2012 : 11:38 p.m.
OK, He is guilty now lets find him and keep him behind bars so this doesn't continue to happen.
Wed, Feb 8, 2012 : 11:38 p.m.
I hope everyone remembers this at election time. Thank you Judge Melinda Morris for releasing this monster. Maybe Mr. Kennedy will check in at your home for his probation.
Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 10:26 a.m.
She is the absolute worst!
Thu, Feb 9, 2012 : 2:30 a.m.
You may want to pay a little closer attention to the elections,my understanding is that Judge Morris is not running for re-election this year.