The trial for a former Delaware Municipal Court Judge accused of tampering with evidence and theft has been delayed until November.
Michael C. Hoague, 62, of 17 Carriage Drive, Delaware, was scheduled to stand trial in Delaware County Common Pleas Court on Oct. 11, but last week the trial was rescheduled to Nov. 13.
The proceeding is expected to take three days.
Originally, the trial set to begin on July 25, but was delayed to Oct. 11 after Hoague brought on a new legal team to represent him.
Hoague is charged with two counts of tampering with records, third-degree felonies, and two counts of theft, fifth-degree felonies.
According to the court records, the charges center around Hoague allegedly filing paperwork while acting as a public defender in 2013 during two criminal cases for a man named Timothy Hamon. Prosecutors alleged Hoague signed a certification during the case asking to be paid by State’s Public Defender Office without disclosing that he had been paid by Hamon’s family, thus “double dipping.”
The tampering charges deal with Hoague filing the paperwork and the theft charges are for the money Hoague allegedly received from the defendant’s family.
Hoague pleaded not guilty to the charges at his arraignment on April 3, but has not commented publicly on the allegations.
At the arraignment, it was stated that Hoague could face up to 36 months in prison for the tampering with evidence charges and up to a year in prison for the theft charges.
Additionally, Assistant Ohio Attorney General Brad L. Tammaro has filed a motion to allow a recording of a jail phone call to be presented at trial. That call was between Hamon and his mother, Shirley Hamon, during the original 2013 case.
A hearing to discuss the matter of the recording has not yet been set.
Hoague was disciplined by the Ohio Supreme Court’s Office of Disciplinary Counsel in 2003 when he was a judge for “conviction of coercion, misconduct as a judge, acting in the manner that does not promote public confidence in the integrity and impartiality of the judiciary and misusing authority of judicial office to achieve the personal goal of reprimanding persons believed guilty of reckless driving.”
According to the disciplinary record, Hoague observed a vehicle driving recklessly on U.S. 23. He wrote the owner of the vehicle a letter stating, “This is a serious matter deserving your immediate attention.”
He ordered the two to appear in his courtroom where he conducted the matter in what the disciplinary record called “an arrogant inquisition.”
Hoague was a municipal court judge in Delaware from January 1996 to December 2001. He did not seek re-election when his term expired.