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Sunday, March 11, 2007

Suspect hopped off to 'Springer' show

An accused child molester cut off his electronic monitoring bracelet, then took a limousine to Chicago to appear on "The Jerry Springer Show," authorities said.

A judge set bail Friday at $50,000 for Mario Sims, 21, who had been awaiting trial on 2004 charges of child enticement and first-degree sexual assault of a child.

Defense lawyer Margaret Johnson argued against the bail amount, but Racine County Circuit Judge Emily Mueller stood firm.

"A significant bond is legally necessary given the fact he absconded, admittedly for one of the more unique reasons I've heard in my time on the bench," the judge said.

According to court records, Sims had been out of jail about three weeks when he cut off the bracelet and missed a court date Sept. 6. His defense attorney at the time, Domingo Cruz, told the judge his client was seen getting into the television show's limousine.

Sims appeared on an episode of the show that aired last fall.

A Web site teaser for it said: "Outrageous nuptials! Returning guest Mario is a proud father and is ready to marry his baby's mother — who's also his half-sister."

A message left for Johnson was not returned Friday. A message left for a producer of the "Jerry Springer Show" was not immediately returned Saturday morning.

Copyright © 2007 The Associated Press

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